Grand Plaza and Masjid
Grand plaza and Masjid: a place of worship, social, cultural and commercial activity
The Grand Plaza is a state of the art public square — a setting for both the Masjid and the main stadium, that combines a suitable arrival point with a place for congregation and celebration. It extends beyond its functional requirements and creates a connection between building and landscape, exemplifying the aspirations of modern day Saudi Arabia, whilst staying true to rich traditions of Islamic architecture.
The central circular space is framed and enclosed by the elegant crescent-shaped Masjid building, ramp to upper podium and landscaped terraces which include seating and are enhanced by colourful shrubs and grasses — planted enclosure, dense palm grove and green ‘oasis’ at the end of the Ceremonial Route.
The central plaza
The central plaza space is a shared surface between vehicles and pedestrians. It’s divided into three distinct spaces, each with a different function.
The arrival plaza forms a grand arrival space and vehicular drop off point with formal palm trees arranged in groves.
The prayer plaza is a simple square directly outside the Masjid. It can accommodate 1000 worshippers in a comfortable and uncluttered space for outdoor praying.
The event plaza is the smallest of the three squares, set slightly off centre to give visual interest to the symmetry and provide a flexible area for events.
The Masjid is a landmark building and a focal point within KASC, fully integrated with the open public space around it. At 12m high, it sits comfortably within the context of the main stadium.
The vision behind the Masjid design is to shape the landscape into a place for public congregation at the heart of KASC, a destination, a place of worship, and a place of social, cultural and commercial activity. The ethereal qualities of the prayer space are defined through the use of light and shade — a palette of elegant materials combined with textural and geometric variation. Designed to fulfil a functional role and reflect the cultural and religious identity of Saudi Arabia, the Masjid doesn’t mimic or compete with the main stadium — it follows the language of gently sloping planes, the podium emerging from the surrounding landscape.
The Masjid will have a single 25m high Minaret, and provide a high quality experience for worshippers and visitors. It can accommodate 500 worshippers in the large main Prayer Hall, which has a Qiblah Wall formed with a structural concrete lattice, clad in crema marfil stone with translucent onyx panels