Khirfan, Luna. "Ornamented Facades and Panoramic Views: The Impact of Tourism Development on al-Salt’s Historic Urban Landscape." In International Journal of Islamic Architecture, Volume 2, Number 2 (pp. 307-324), edited by Mohammad Gharipour, Bristol: Intellect, 2013.
This article discusses a series of tourism development projects for historic al-Salt in Jordan that began in the 1990s. A critical analysis of these projects reveals how their emphasis on tourism development results in superficial treatments that overlook the distinctive nature of the city’s morphology and the productive relationship between architectural elements and cultural, economic and political processes. Thus, using al-Salt in Jordan as a case study, this article reveals how preservation efforts can be rejected by a local community, particularly when the specifics of social, cultural, political and economic identity are not considered. According to the findings, these historical specificities contribute to shaping the city’s distinctive urban morphology. As such, al-Salt’s rehabilitation was reduced to superficial beautification and surface treatments that prioritize a fleeting visual experience for tourists but fail to address the fundamental aspects of rehabilitating the historic urban landscape.