»Riyadh Central Park«, Saudi Arabia, 2014
Given its size of approx. 6 million inhabitants Riyadh provides only few green open spaces for the urban population. This is partly due to the city's severe climatic context. The municipality of Riyadh aims at increasing the ratio of green open space by identifying new areas in the densely populated city for public green open space. One of the possible areas to implement this idea is the »Old Airport« which nowadays is used as a military basis only. Huge open spaces currently without use can be converted into a park this way following the study »Metropolitan Development Strategy for Arriyadh« (MEDSTAR, 2009), in which the airport is dedicated as a main development hub for whole Riyadh as a central park. With its approx. 2 million sqm of green open space and water surfaces the foreseen park features recreational and leisure amenities like a multifunctional sports stadium with adjacent sports park for visitors. Landscaped elements, such as water falls or sunken gardens, as well as cultural facilities and cafés or restaurants will be additional attractions. The fringes of the park will be realigned by mix-used and residential buildings which will connect the park to its neighbourhood in a vital way. This aspect will be underlined by green fingers, which will spatially link the park to the surrounding city. Important access points will be emphasized by high rise buildings. The whole area will be tied to the existing road network by providing new roads and corridors. Further to accessing the park by car visitors can use public transport, which will be expanded to connect the park. With its numerous amenities and attractions »Riyadh Central Park« will trigger a new era of open green spaces, which underlines Riyadh as the kingdoms capital. Hence, it will give an impetus to both, its surroundings and the entire city as a catalyst for the city´s development.
View from Viewing Platform over Main Lake towards the stadium