Consortium wins Medina district cooling PPP

17 January 2024
The plant will have a capacity of 21,000 tons of refrigeration and will be built in two phases

Saudi Arabia's Knowledge Economic City (KEC) has signed a public-private partnership (PPP) contract to develop a chilled water district cooling plant in Medina.

KEC, through its subsidiary, Makarem Al-Maarifa Hospitality, signed the agreement with the consortium comprising UAE-based ADC Energy Systems, Ireland's Johnson Controls and the local City Cool Company.

According to the statement published on the Saudi Stock Exchange (Tadawul), KEC said that the contract covers the construction of a district cooling plant with a capacity of 21,000 tonnes of refrigeration (TR).

The project will be developed over two phases and provide cooling services to the Hub Mall, Hilton Tower and a branded residence tower.

ADC Energy Systems will be the engineering, procurement and construction contractor. Johnson Controls will supply York chillers to the plant, and City Cool will handle the operations, maintenance and facility management.

The consortium will develop the project on a build, own, operate, and transfer (BOOT) model for 25 years.

The total development cost and construction timeline for the project were not disclosed.

In June last year, KEC awarded a SR507m ($135m) contract to the local Alsaad General Contracting for electromechanical and finishing work on its KEC Hub mall project in Medina. 

In addition to the mall, KEC Hub’s first phase includes a 354-key five-star Hilton-branded hotel that is scheduled to start operations in 2024, KEC said in a Tadawul filing in April 2021.

KEC’s pipeline for the project also includes a luxury residential apartment tower with 100 housing units, which will be linked to the mall, restaurants, services and hotel areas.

The developer secured SR782m in funding from the government-backed Tourism Development Fund and the local Riyad Bank in April 2021 to develop the first phase of KEC Hub.

KEC Hub has a land area of about 186,000 square metres (sq m), and the commercial rental area for the project is about 122,000 sq m. The project also features a 65,000 sq m public park, and is scheduled to commence operations in 2024.

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