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Evalatuan of conservation problems of the Lead Mosque in Scutari, Albania
The Lead Mosque, constructed in 1187 H. (1773-1774 AD.) by Mehmet Pashe Bushatliu, located in Scutari, Albania, is a unique Ottoman mosque as a single unit domed type with an iwan. As it is one of the few Ottoman mosques remained in Albania, it is determined as the subject of this thesis in order to contribute to its conservation. The aim of this thesis is to document the Lead Mosque, to analyze its conservation problems and to propose a restoration project. The methodology used is the field survey together with archival and literature research. The data collected in the field survey and literature research was analyzed and assessed to develop restoration decisions. In 1865, as the Drini River changed its bed, the mosque was affected by floods and was surrounded by water. This caused material deterioration and increase of humidity inside the mosque. In 1967, during the communism era, the Lead Mosque was closed. In the same year, its minaret was destroyed by lightning. Following that the building was left unmaintained. Although it was repaired in the years 1863, 1920, 1976, 1982 and 2008 during the interventions original workmanship and material were lost due to faulty implementations. Through many years the mosque went through some alterations such as material conversion and later additions. These alterations were mostly the result of previous restoration works, causing the loss of the authenticity of the building. The restoration proposal is for the building as well as for its surroundings. It aims to preserve the original architectural characteristics of the mosque and to regain its lost environmental, cultural and religious value. Regarding the surroundings, it is proposed to open a new drainage canal around the mosque to prevent the rising damp and another canal running along the building lot to prevent flooding. Additionally, it is proposed to create natural wetlands by increasing plantation along the canal to have also a recreational area. In order to protect the building from further damages a management and maintenance plan is also proposed.