• Client:
  • Location:
  • Riyadh, Saudi Arabia
  • Status:
  • Design Development, 2011
  • Size:
  • 888,335 m2


The KACST masterplan sets out a vision for a state of the art research and innovation campus in Saudi Arabia.

An integrated view of building mass, energy consumption and user interaction has created a forward-looking campus design that is both cohesive and highly sustainable. A modular framework, an optimised grid system for research laboratories and support buildings allows maximum flexibility.

Innovative use of pedestrian traffic flow and built form create localised microclimates within each building. Daylight, passive cooling and water use have been carefully controlled to make full use of available resources.

Key elements of the master plan passive design strategy are the primary reduction of heat loads and the appropriate response to issues such as dust control. The master plan shading system plays a significant role in the overall success of the environmental performance by minimising direct heat to the public domain, with the potential benefit of generating energy to offset overall campus consumption.

A night sky cooling strategy is also incorporated to allow heat built up during the day to escape during the cooler night hours. This also allows daylight to penetrate the master plan surface during the winter months. The car park plays a major role in the sustainable performance through the use of thermal coupling and thermal mass to reduce heat loads, and to filter and pre-condition air prior to entering the active environmental systems.

The centrepiece of the masterplan is the Headquarter building which will define KACST on the city skyline. 

The campus layout and forward-thinking design will attract researchers from around the globe.
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Design: Toko / Development: Damien Aistrope