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Zaha Hadid Architects to design Aljada’s Central Hub with water droplet-like buildings in UAE

United Arab Emirates Architecture News - Mar 27, 2018 - 07:02   17932 views

Zaha Hadid Architects to design Aljada’s Central Hub with water droplet-like buildings in UAE

Zaha Hadid Architects has won a competition to design a new Central Hub at the heart of Aljada, as part of renowned developer Arada's masterplan in Sharjah, United Arab Emirates. 

Named as the Central Hub, the project will be following environmental strategies integrated throughout the masterplan to minimise the consumption of resources. ZHA's proposal conceptualises the moment a water droplet strikes the earth’s surface, captured in an array of elliptical buildings designed to channel prevailing winds into civic spaces and courtyards to facilitate cooling during the summer months.

The 1.9 million square foot Central Hub will feature a central observation tower that is surrounded by vibrant public squares with water features irrigated by recovered and recycled water. The vast masterplan will contain a series of tensile canopies, sustaining a microclimate at ground level for verdant gardens of species native to the region.

“Zaha Hadid Architects is globally renowned for forward-thinking and transformational urban design. While all of the companies in this design competition offered outstanding designs, Zaha Hadid Architects’ integrated design approach matched our vision for Aljada’s Central Hub as an interconnected destination. This approach is synonymous with ARADA’s mission to develop rewarding and engaging communities, building the Sharjah of tomorrow," said HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chairman of Arada.

Developed as a AED24 billion ($6,63 billion) Aljada mixed-use development, the Central Hub is conceived to be a new focus for the UAE and a significant addition to Sharjah, regarded as the cultural capital of the Arab world. Aljada’s Central Hub will be a major destination for tourists and residents in its own right, offering world-class amenities complemented by community facilities as well as retail and dining experiences.

"In line with Arada’s mission to build sustainable urban environments, the Central Hub’s design will incorporate the use of treated wastewater for irrigation, while the architecture will incorporate active and passive measures to lower the demand for indoor cooling," said ZHA in a press statement. 

The first phase of the Central Hub will create a lively, family-friendly destination with a series of attractions and activities for residents of Sharjah to enjoy the Aljada site throughout the year; including an adventure activity zone, a food market showcasing home-grown delicacies and outdoor events spaces.

“Zaha Hadid Architects is proud to partner with ARADA on a project designed for Sharjah’s community and its visitors. Applying all our knowledge and experience in creating some of the world’s most popular civic spaces, we look forward to working closely with Arada to foster Sharjah’s public realm in delivering Aljada’s Central Hub," said Tariq Khayyat, Head of Region–Middle East, Zaha Hadid Architects

Aljada was launched by HH Sheikh Dr Sultan bin Muhammad Al Qasimi, Supreme Council Member and Ruler of Sharjah in early September 2017. The 24 million sq. ft. project has become Sharjah’s fastest-selling residential community. The project will be delivered in phases beginning in 2019, the entire project is expected to be completed by 2025. CH2M has been awarded the infrastructure design contract for the project. 

Aljada is situated in the heart of Sharjah with exceptional connectivity to surrounding areas. The masterplan is designed with walkability and wide green spaces in mind, allowing residents, workers and visitors to live, work and play within a fully integrated and sustainable community. 

Zaha Hadid Architects has recently been named as the winner of the WA Awards in the 27th Cycle with KAPSARC (King Abdullah Petroleum Studies and Research Centre) in Saudi Arabia. 

Top image © VA

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