The AERA-Egypt Mark Lehner Center has proven to be a valuable asset and home base to our Giza operations near the foot of the Pyramids. Since we purchased the property in February 2009, we quickly developed a fully functional research and education center. We began expansion efforts in late 2009, breaking ground on the first addition to the property: a single-story brick building with rooms for our support staff, a new laundry, kitchen storeroom, and bathroom. In keeping with the Middle Eastern tradition of using rooftops, we turned the top into a large open-air classroom and work area. A reed-matting canopy covers half of the area and offers shelter from the sun. An added benefit, the structure buffers noise from the street, creating a quiet classroom for staff and students.
We recognize these benefactors who made the AERA-Egypt home base at Giza possible:
- Lurie Lane – For Ann Lurie, the walkway around the villa and garden
- The Ted Waitt Library and Lecture Hall – For Ted Waitt
- The Charles & Lisa Simonyi Synergy Center – For The Charles and Lisa Simonyi Fund For Arts & Sciences, our computer lab
- Koch Commons – For David Koch
- Villa Giuseppe Ferlini – For Peter Norton, the upper floor of the main building complex, named after the explorer who lobbed tops off Nubian Pyramids
- Bayt Susan* – For Susan Hutchison, the main floor of the building complex
- The Fisher Garden – For Marjorie Fisher
- The George Link Four Frog Fountain – For former AERA board member and legal counsel, the late George Link
*Bayt means “house” in Arabic, and “Susan” derives from the ancient Egyptian word for lotus.
Thank you all for helping make our vision and dream become a reality!
We officially moved into the Center in February 2010 for the Spring season. It quickly showed its value, providing accommodations and meeting and work space for our team and field school with computer stations, archives, a library, offices, kitchen, and most importantly a home where we can securely store our equipment during the off-season. Our archives and library remain open year-round for AERA staff in Egypt as well as for field school students and for colleagues. The Center also provides accommodations for team members during off-season visits. Having a year-round base vastly simplifies the process of opening and closing field seasons and offers far better facilities than we could ever rent.
The accomplishments achieved since we first purchased the property have been astounding. As AERA-Egypt becomes the center of an archaeological community, we work towards a vision to achieve its maximum potential with new additions:
- A dormitory building
- Lecture Hall
- Director’s/Guest House
- New Kitchen
Support the AERA-Egypt Center! Help the Center grow as a base for a community of archaeologists by supporting improvements to the infrastructure, library, and archives.