Jeddah Central District

city centre redevelopment

This project was to take on a quasi-municipal role in steering 7 sqkm of central city land forward with about 25m sqm of sustainable development in the poorly planned and expanded Jeddah and promote the re-occupation and regeneration of the Old City.


The unique strategy was to provide a tidal powered water cleaning mechanism involving a 1 sqkm high water basin constrained by dykes built on decayed coral reefs in the outed harbour. Sluice gates trap high tide water in the basin, which is siphoned through 20km of pipes buried on the sea floor to the back of inner harbour areas to literally flush away contaminated water. Within 4 years Mediterranean quality water is expected.


Whilst c. 10m sqm of development on the new islands was possible, the core benefits are to liberate 16km of waterfront from the blight caused by foul water, which in turn will help fund infrastructure and regeneration in the Old City.

Dense development in selected areas as defined by a ‘Mountains and Valleys’ overall massing and skyline concept, is intended to fund major road alterations, air rights development over existing urban motorways and new bridges.

Working with Space Syntax, Wilkinson Eyre Architects, Arup Urban Design and Engineering, Davis Langdon, Jones Lang deSalle, Aveco de Bondt and Vialis, Matthew Priestman lead architectural proposals and masterplan studies for strategies, the Islands, Waterfront areas, a new high buildings sector, public squares and selected components within the masterplan.


City of Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Design Services:

Advisory, Strategic Masterplan, Urban Design, Architectural Concepts


2006 - 2008