Mecca, Saudi Arabia
The proposed Pilgrim City development is a direct response to the projected increase in pilgrim numbers to Mecca over the next 5 years. Situated less than 4km from the Grand Mosque, the development will deliver all required services, including accommodation, catering, public and private transport, spiritual, shopping, business and recreational requirements.
The total development area of 1,4 million square meters includes private residences, hotels, serviced apartments, retail spaces, public open spaces, a transport interchange, a mosque and a traditional souk or market. Upon completion, the scheme will accommodate approximately 100 000 people.
To ensure viability outside of the main pilgrimage season, the development’s primary retail areas are publically accessible and cater for the needs of the broader Meccan population. These public areas are separated from the private residential zones by a natural elevation change on the site. This elevation change between public and private areas reflects the design of a traditional village, where private areas were elevated and contained behind city walls for protection.
These “walls” separating the upper (private) areas from the lower (public) zones are reinterpreted as contemporary “urban walls”, containing retail shops, hotels and other semi public facilities. These walls are punctured by bridges, stairs and other circulation devices at key points, in order to control and permit interaction between public and private areas.
The strategic layering of public and private spaces and overlapping of programme throughout the scheme creates areas of concentrated activity, which will contribute towards the making of a vibrant precinct without compromising the pragmatic logistical requirements associated with the transient pilgrim population.
Boutique Hotel & Residences
Jeddah, Saudi Arabia
The Jeddah Boutique Hotel & Residences is a vibrant mixed-use development which is intended to become a luxury lifestyle destination for hotel guests, apartment owners, as well as the city’s inhabitants – combining aspects of work, live, recreation and entertainment within a single scheme.
Public facilities (spa, restaurants, sky-bar, pool deck and lounges) are condensed into a highly activated, elevated public space that promotes the idea of an urbane, luxury lifestyle and connects the building to the surrounding views. These facilities are housed in a perforated metal cube, which is suspended above the street level to create an exclusive and iconic object along the busy street edge.
In addition to these facilities, the scheme consists of a boutique hotel, serviced apartments and penthouses, a conference facility, business lounge and retail stores.
The scheme responds to climatic informants through the creation of slender, shaded, external spaces that are extensively landscaped and the extensive use of perforated screens, which controls solar heat gain and glare, while ensuring privacy of hotel guests without compromising the views.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
The Riyadh lifestyle development is a secure compound for Western expatriates and business executives, which provides all required services and amenities for contemporary and upmarket urban living.
The compound is designed to deliver an integrated urban lifestyle. It enables a standard of living that inhabitants may be accustomed to in their home countries, but may not be available in typical Saudi residential developments.
The design concept proposes a central urban park as its core, around which various communal functions and residential neighbourhoods are located. The urban park houses a football pitch, as well as a variety of generously scaled urban gardens and other recreational spaces, which provide an alternative to the compact, shaded and more tranquil pedestrian streets of the compound’s residential neighbourhoods. Strategically located communal facilities such as cafes, galleries, restaurants, upmarket boutiques, schools, a fitness centre, theatre and events spaces create a highly activated, pedestrianised and energised environment.
The scheme places an emphasis on pedestrian friendly spaces. All cars are housed in conveniently located parking garages, and all streets within the scheme are pedestrian friendly, green spaces. Residents traverse the scheme on foot, or with communal golf karts. The upscale housing unit blocks create shaded courtyards between them, which maximises the usability of outdoor spaces in the harsh Saudi climate. The scheme delivers a variety of spaces and facilities which ensures a rich and distinguished urban living experience.