Largest Urartian Museum to open in Turkey's east
VAN – Anadolu AgencyThe Urartian Museum, the construction of which started in 2012 after the main museum in the city was badly damaged during the major earthquake in the eastern province of Van in 2011, will house thousands of artifacts from the Urartian civilization.
The museum construction has been continuing within the scope of a support program initiated by the Ministry of Development after the earthquake.
The museum, which will be the largest Urartian Museum in the world, covers an area of 50,000 square meters, 13,000 square meters of which is a closed area. So far, 15.2 million Turkish Liras has been spent on the project.
A total of 5,000 historic artifacts will be displayed at the museum, which will open when final work is completed after the merchandising tender, due to be held in July.
Culture and Tourism Provincial Director Muzaffer Aktuğ said the museum, constructed with funding from the Development Ministry and located opposite the Van Fortress, would revive the history of the Urartians.
Aktuğ said the Urartians, who lived in the Van region 2,500 years ago, declared Van as their capital and the city should have a museum to highlight this heritage.
“The environmental arrangements of the museum have been completed. Previously, the merchandising tender was made twice but there was no participation. The tender will be made for the third time in July. Surely this time there will be participation. The outer façade of the museum has been completely surrounded by glass. We tried to reflect the magnificent visual of the Van Fortress on the front part of the museum,” he added.
Because the museum has been closed since the earthquake, local and foreign tourists visiting the city have not had a chance to go to the museum and the city has lost vital promotional opportunity.
“The new Urartian Museum will contribute to the promotion of Van,” he said.
“Everyone visiting the fortress will also visit the museum. Travel agencies will also include the new museum in their tour programs. We will revive a history of 5,000 years and show it to people. Those who come to Van and see the Urartian Museum will closely observe Urartian history. There will also be an archaeopark for children. It is very important for children to learn about our history,” Aktuğ added.