The pyramid of Menkaure, the smallest of the three at the Giza Necropolis, is now open to the public after renovation works were completed.
The reopening of the 4,300-year-old pyramid is part of a bigger project of the Antiquities Ministry, according to which every one or two years a pyramid will be closed for cleaning and renovation works while the other two will remain open to the public. As the Antiquities Minister Mamdouh al-Damaty stated, the Pyramid of Khafre will be closed on April 1.
For the two-year renovation of the Menkaure Pyramid more than 20 Egyptian and European conservators along with three professional archaeologists have worked. The project’s cost is estimated at 3.5 million EGP ($493,000).
The pyramid had an original height of 65.5 meters high with a square base of 108.5 meters. The limestone and granite pyramid was built to serve as the tomb of the fourth dynasty Pharaoh Menkaure (2530 BC-2500 BC). Unlike the other two pyramids, in the outer bottom level and the burial chamber of Menkaure’s pyramid pink granite was used that is still visible.
Head of Giza archaeological site Kamal Waheed told The Cairo Post that the restoration work included the removal of graffiti which visitors had left on the walls of the pyramid’s passageways and burial chamber, the removal of the salt deposits from its walls and the replacement of the outer stairs leading to the Pyramid. “It also included the installation of a special lighting system which does not damage the drawings and inscriptions while at the same time providing a clear view for visitors,” he added.