Zaha Ha­did Ar­chi­tects has been ap­pointed to de­sign the Cen­tral Hub of UAE de­vel­oper ARADA’s Al­jada com­mu­nity project in Shar­jah.

The Dhs24 bil­lion scheme – the largest ever seen in the emi­rate – con­cep­tu­alises the mo­ment a wa­ter droplet hits the ground with a se­ries of el­lip­ti­cal build­ings con­structed around a cen­tral ob­ser­va­tion tower, en­abling pre­vail­ing winds to be chan­nelled into civic spa­ces and court­yards to as­sist with cool­ing dur­ing sum­mer months.

Wa­ter fea­tures in public squares are ir­ri­gated by re­cov­ered and re­cy­cled wa­ter, fur­ther help­ing sus­tain a suit­able mi­cro­cli­mate at ground level for species na­tive to the re­gion.

The project in­cludes pro­vi­sion of homes for 70,000 res­i­dents, around 500,000 square me­tres of of­fices and a 165,000-square me­tre shop­ping dis­trict, as well as the ZHA cul­tural hub.

HE Sheikh Sul­tan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, Chair­man of ARADA, said: “While all of the com­pa­nies in this de­sign com­pe­ti­tion of­fered out­stand­ing de­signs, Zaha Ha­did Ar­chi­tects’ in­te­grated 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.”

The first phase of the 175,000-square me­tre Cen­tral Hub will cre­ate fam­ily-friendly at­trac­tions, in­clud­ing an ad­ven­ture ac­tiv­ity zone, a food mar­ket and out­door events spa­ces.

The en­tire project is ex­pected to be com­pleted by 2025.

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