World’s largest botanic gar­den to open in Oman

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World-renowned de­sign firm Ha­ley Sharpe De­sign (hsd) has teamed up with Arup and Grimshaw to de­liver the en­gi­neer­ing, land­scap­ing, ar­chi­tec­ture, and in­ter­pre­ta­tive de­signs for the breath-tak­ing Oman Botanic Gar­den. Spread over an area of 420 hectares, the Oman Botanic Gar­den will be amongst the largest within the Ara­bian Penin­sula and in the world.

With guid­ance from His Majesty Sul­tan Qa­boos bin Said Al Said, the gar­den will cel­e­brate and con­serve the coun­try’s botanic di­ver­sity which will be en­joyed by the peo­ple of Oman for gen­er­a­tions to come. Two el­e­gant biomes will con­tain a sig­nif­i­cant num­ber of species. A high num­ber of these are en­demic and en­dan­gered. Lo­cated 35 kilo­me­tres from Mus­cat, in the foothills of the Al Ha­jar Moun­tains, the Oman Botanic Gar­den will be home to a vis­i­tor cen­tre as well as ed­u­ca­tion and re­search fa­cil­i­ties. Vis­i­tors will ex­pe­ri­ence the en­tire flora of the Sul­tanate of Oman in just a few hours. The eight de­fined habi­tats of the coun­try are sen­si­tively ar­ranged at the cen­tre of the site, grace­fully bounded by Jebel Sufra and the ma­jes­tic Qurn Mubarak. Vis­i­tors will travel around the wadis, moun­tains and deserts of Oman within an im­mer­sive land­scaped set­ting dis­play­ing only na­tive species, many of which can­not be found any­where else in the world. Alis­dair Hin­shel­wood, De­signer and Di­rec­tor at hsd stated, “The Oman Botanic Gar­den project set it­self and the en­tire de­sign team unique tech­ni­cal and cul­tural ob­jec­tives and as­pi­ra­tions. hsd has rel­ished work­ing on a project where the botan­i­cal, land­scape and cul­tural her­itage of Oman is be­ing ex­pressed through the de­tailed sci­en­tific re­search, tech­ni­cal de­sign, and sheer cre­ative en­thu­si­asm of the en­tire team, client and de­sign alike.” Ed Clarke, As­so­ciate Di­rec­tor and Project Man­ager com­mented, “At Arup we have en­joyed the many unique chal­lenges pre­sented by the Oman Botanic Gar­den; from de­sign­ing nat­u­ral and authentic land­scapes to recre­at­ing the cool mists of the Kha­reef. More than 700 of our mul­ti­dis­ci­plinary en­gi­neers and spe­cial­ist de­sign­ers were en­gaged to ex­plore and find so­lu­tions that would be­fit such an am­bi­tious and cre­ative brief. The Oman Botanic Gar­den must surely be one of the most mar­vel­lous projects in the world.”

Work­ing for the Di­wan of Royal Court, Arup, Grimshaw and In­ter­pre­ta­tive De­sign­ers hsd, have pro­vided full multi-dis­ci­plinary ser­vices, right from mas­ter plan­ning through to con­struc­tion de­sign. The project is due to start on site im­mi­nently.

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