CAIRO: Residents of a landmark building in Egypt’s upscale Zamalek district were forced to evacuate their homes on Sunday after a land subsidence.
The building is located near ongoing excavation work to extend Cairo's underground metro, Ahram Online reported, with people blaming ongoing construction work in the area for the incident.
Photos and videos shared online showed deep cracks in the building's walls and slight subsidence outside the building.
The Egyptian National Authority for Tunnels confirmed that a land subsidence has occurred but denied it was a result of the metro extension in the district.
“Slight ground subsidence occurred at one of the corners of building number 17 in Brazil Street in Zamalek as well as at the front yard and fence of the (adjacent) Bahraini embassy," read the statement quoted by Ahram.
Residents of the area had been complaining for long about the impact of the construction on Zamalek’s older buildings. It is reported that several Egyptian starts from the golden age had once lived in the 12-storey building.
On Sunday, the current residents were evacuated as they feared it might collapse, the report said.
Engineering teams were dispatched to the location evaluate the situation and study the safety of the building.
Transport Minister Kamel El-Wazir said in televised comments late on Sunday that residents were given 30,000 Egyptian pounds ($1,877) each in order to find a temporary residence until they are able to return to their apartments, the report quoted him as saying.