Recognizing our efforts in completing the King Abdullah Sports City in Jiddah in a short period of time and with the highest standards of quality and cost control, HRH Prince Khalid Al-Faisal, governor of Makkah, recently presented Saudi Aramco with the “Makkah Award for Architectural Excellence” for 2015.
The award was accepted by Amin Nasser, president and CEO of Saudi Aramco, in the presence of HRH Prince Mishaal bin Majed, Governor of the Jiddah Province, and a number of members of the royal family and ministers, as well as other award winners and specialists involved with the various branches of the awards.
Nasser said Saudi Aramco was proud to participate in building the Jewel of Jiddah and thanked the wise leadership of the Kingdom that supported the completion of the project, which “will give people training, recreation, and athletic opportunities today and for generations to come.
“Saudi Aramco continues to support the progress of the nation and consolidation of progress in development and sustainability in our beloved Kingdom,” he added.
Nasser spoke about the story of designing King Abdullah Sports City and said the design was shared with the late King Abdullah in 2002. At that time, the king instructed that the facility should express the Islamic spirit of Jiddah, since it is a gateway to the Two Holy Mosques. The design also strived to reflect the vision of the Kingdom to be a leading Arab nation.
Nasser said that since the Islamic culture was, and still is, a source of inspiration, the idea of the design symbolized a shining jewel clad with facades reflecting the local “mashrabiya,” an architecture form commonly found in the Western Region. These facades provide shade throughout the interior corridors of the stadium.
Construction of the project took about one year, and was completed in 2014. On May 1 of that year, the city was officially opened by then-King Abdullah.
King Abdullah Sports City contains an international soccer stadium that can accommodate a capacity of more than 62,000, three separate soccer stadiums, four small indoor arenas that can also be used for soccer, six tennis courts, a large indoor arena for sports and other purposes, as well as a primary mosque and six smaller mosques, a comprehensive media center, and other amenities, among which are hundreds of seats for individuals with special needs, lobby areas featuring artwork from prominent Saudi artists, and a number of halls and areas for press conferences.
The Makkah Excellence Awards are designed to encourage the distinguished quality of work of prominent individual or collective efforts. The award includes eight major areas, including excellence in Haj and Umrah services, administrative excellence, economic excellence, social excellence, cultural excellence, environmental excellence, architectural excellence, and scientific and technical excellence. Winners in these fields were honored during the annual award ceremony held in the Western Region.