Innovation Cluster Residential District Concept Design

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, since 2019

Integration of street space in form of Living Streets and the formal vocabulary of the residential buildings inspired by Najd architecture to foster neighbourhoods. The District includes also a mosque, a community centre, and two kindergartens

  • Client: MBS Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud Foundation (MiSK)
  • Timeframe: since 2019
  • Planning Area: 42 ha
  • Use: Residential Development, Open Space
Bird view of the Eastern residential area District 5
Bird view of the Eastern residential area District 5

One of the key objectives of the Innovation Cluster is to develop human centred neighbourhoods. These are created around so-called Living Streets and buildings that combine the rich Salmani Architecture of Riyadh with modern day lifestyles. Living Streets enhance community building and meeting your neighbour, walking or cycling has never been easier. Through this approach, the neighbourhoods revive the spirit of the ancient city with its pedestrian and slow mobility only public realm, while meeting the requirements of a 21st century city.

 

Residential neighbourhood with the Living Street
Residential neighbourhood with the Living Street
Public realm as a living community area
Public realm as a living community area

Modelled around shared-space principles, all attendants in the public realm have equal rights in using it individually. This is achieved through a careful neighbourhood planning. The integration of key public amenities, such as neighbourhood greens, playgrounds, central public facilities including mosques or kindergartens enriches the streetscape and demands a reduction of the overall travel speed. A sustainable surface water strategy allows a localised drainage into the nearby Wadi system mimicking the natural flow of the rainwater and enhancing the overall resilience of the development.

 

The Linear Park within the residential neighbourhoods
The Linear Park within the residential neighbourhoods
Neighbourhood square
Neighbourhood square

The design of neighbourhoods, like in the Residential District 5 in the Eastern part of the Innovation Cluster, is based on the rich vernacular language of the Salmani Architecture. Especially the entrances to the individual units are linked to the Living Street design with both forming one entity. Multiple housing types have been developed on a modular basis allowing different street configurations with individual character. The careful design of the facades ensures the required privacy. The thought-through strategy of the neighbourhoods reaches back to the essence of communities in the Old Riyadh with its narrow siccas and closely arranged houses, allowing a modern nowadays lifestyle.

The neighbourhood plaza
The neighbourhood plaza