Al Wasl Demonstration Area

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Riyadh, Saudi Arabia

Serving as the retail heart of the neighborhood of Al Wasl are 5 blocks of mixed-use with retail at the ground level and three levels of residential above. The main north-south street will be primarily pedestrian-oriented with traffic diverted entirely or restricted during peak hours. This retail spine will be anchored at the south by a large grocery store with public square in front which could serve as an outdoor market. A bridge across the street acts as a focal terminus of this street while allowing circulation at the ground level below. A pedestrian passage from the west connects this plaza with a pocket park. The northern end will terminate in a dynamic tensile structure and plaza which intersects with the Wadi. There will be a lake around this northern plaza which will add drama, as water is precious in the desert.

Following the wadi is a double height arcade allowing men to enjoy the ground level and families to have a private level above and still get to see the wadi. Heading along this arcade east from the Tensile structure the water is directly adjacent to the building making a hard urban edge for the wadi. The wadi has a much softer edge on its northern side which is adjacent to residential buildings without retail. The arcade terminates at the Sales center plaza. Additionally, the major east-west road will be Main Street and will allow vehicular traffic into the area. Main Street will be lined with arcades giving it a different character from the pedestrian street. All of this is directly adjacent to a north-south transit boulevard to the east which will allow alternative means of transportation to the area. Most people can walk directly from the surrounding residential blocks as well.

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