Signature Buildings For A Signature Site
The proposed site is an extremely good location on one of Jeddah’s busiest roads and is an area that fuses together the old city of Jeddah and the new rapidly northern expanding city, towards the airport and beyond.
Residential – Outer Ring
Although the scheme is mixed use, the primary raison d’etre of the development is to provide a residential environment that fulfills the needs of the Jeddah community. Although the apartments are kept to “behind the ring road” for added security reasons and privacy, the ideals of the concept is to allow for an integrated environment, which encourages street side activities. Restaurants, coffee bars, food outlets, service-oriented shops and the like, are to be contained within the “inner” public ring. The inner ring contains the hotel, rotunda building, sunken plaza and retail-related components of the public buildings.
The hotel building is the most visually interesting and attractive in the complex.
The design is for a 300-room four-star hotel of ground plus 12 storeys in height. The form consists of two teardrop spherical shapes atop a base, with a central core connecting the two towers. It is situated within the northern circle of the ring road, which is the larger of the two and is interconnected with the sunken plaza. The hotel is the most public component of the complex and should be the flagship of the development in terms of setting the standards of the service delivery and quality. If the hotel is not of the right character, the rest of the development will be affected.
The Rotunda building sits to the south of the hotel and is more formal in nature. The Rotunda building is a ground plus 6-storey building housing the complex management offices, health club and wellness centre and any other services that contribute to the residences requirements.
Sunken plaza and related retail and restaurants.
This public square is the main people watching space in the complex and is covered with shade structures and mist sprayers to encourage alfresco dining and activities where possible under the weather conditions.
These eating and retail facilities are all connected directly and easily from the underground parking areas and provide a quiet repose from the energy of the streets above.
Convention Centre And Events Hall
The Convention Centre is raised off the ground floor level, allowing the road to disappear below its structure on three sides. The Convention Centre takes the form of a low scallop shell which rises from the ground in the east to a rising glazed façade of 14 metres high, capturing the imagination of the passing traffic.
This grand gesture engages with Malik Road edge and entices users of conferences, exhibitions and weddings or social events into a component of the overall development.
Tent Exhibition And Function Hall
This building shares the Malik Road street frontage with the Convention Centre and takes the form of a transparent, high-end technology product to showcase green energy and transparency while housing food stores, exhibitions and functions of a smaller scale than the hotel and convention centre. The Tent can be access by pedestrians off the street who are controlled by the corner gatehouses off Malik Road.
The development as a whole concentrates on its external open space environment as much as its built environments. The sensations of walking through the neighbourhoods of Hausmanns Paris or Solidere in Beirut are very tangible and these aspects are to be in the forefront of the design of the streetscape and landscape within the development. Curb edges, urban furniture, lighting, entrance thresholds and boundary walls all contribute to the uniqueness of the controlled gated community.