176,516 sqm Central Hub was designed by Zaha Hadid Architects
Q4 2018 is when ARADA intends to launch phase one of its Central Hub, which is a critical part of its $6.5bn Aljada megaproject. Zaha Hadid Architects was awarded the design contract following a global competition and the firm is said to have designed the hub with significant environmental considerations, in line with ARADA’s goals of developing a vibrant and sustainable environment.
ARADA notes that the winning submission “conceptualises the first moment a water droplet strikes the earth’s surface, captured in an array of elliptical buildings designed to channel prevailing winds into civic spaces and courtyards to facilitate cooling during the summer months.”
Explaining further, the developer says that the hub’s central observation tower is surrounded by public squares that incorporate water features, which use recovered and recycled water. Tensile canopies are said to sustain a microclimate at ground level for gardens populated by species native to the region.
“Zaha Hadid Architects is globally renowned for forward-thinking and transformational urban design. While all of the companies in this design competition offered outstanding designs, Zaha Hadid Architects’ integrated design 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,” said HE Sheikh Sultan bin Ahmed Al Qasimi, chairman of ARADA.
The developer says the 1.9m sqft Central hub will be a new focus for leisure and entertainment in the UAE, and will be a significant addition to Sharjah’s landscape. The first phase of the project will incorporate an ARADA sales centre, an adventure activity zone, a food truck destination and outdoor event spaces. Once launched, ARADA says the hub will create a fun and family-friendly destination for residents of Sharjah and the other emirates throughout the year.
Tariq Khayyat, head of region – Middle East, Zaha Hadid Architects added, “Zaha Hadid Architects is proud to partner with ARADA on a project designed for Sharjah’s community and its visitors. Applying all our knowledge and experience in creating some of the world’s most popular civic spaces, we look forward to working closely with ARADA to deliver the Central Hub; fostering Sharjah’s public realm as a truly global city.”
The architecture firm’s design for the Central Hub is said to incorporate the use of treated wastewater to allow vegetation in the precinct to flourish, while the architecture will incorporate active and passive measures to lower the demand for indoor cooling.
Delivered in phases starting in 2019, ARADA expects the entire project to be completed by 2025.