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In 1965, Karam was the designer of the Beirut City Center, a multi-use complex with an egg-shaped shell housing a cinema, surrounded by towers and at the time the largest shopping mall in the middle east. The outbreak of the civil war in Lebanon in 1975 left the structure damaged beyond repair. Most of the buildings were razed but there have been some efforts to rehabilitate the egg (also nicknamed ‘sabouneh’ or soap by locals) which has survived, and which now occupies an iconic place in the hearts of Lebanese nostalgic for the country’s prewar era. In June 2004, a front page article in The Wall Street Journal discussed some designs to preserve and restore the egg. This series of photos, called "A Dozen Eggs" was created to encourage saving Beirut's Egg.
© 2010 Robert W. Easton