Leisure & Tourism Project of the Year: The Kingdom Flag Pole project in Jeddah

22 June 2016

The giant flagpole, carrying a flag visible from miles away, has been recognised as the tallest in the world

Entrant: SAK Consultant 

Project owner: Jeddah Municipality

Developer: Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives

EPC contractors: Al-Babtain Contracting Company and others

Consultants: SAK Consultant, Cracknell, Flint & Neill/Arup and others

Architect: SAK Consultant

Financier: Abdul Latif Jameel Community Initiatives

The Kingdom Flagpole Project aimed to create a landmark for Saudi Arabia. As the gateway to the two Holy Mosques, the city of Jeddah was selected as the site for the flagpole.

The project received various accolades from the municipality of Jeddah for its health and safety performance, sustainability, time keeping, supply chain best practices, innovation and standout performance.

At 171.4 metres, it is the tallest flagpole in the world, and weighs 500 tonnes. The 570kg, 1,635-square-metre flag is visible from miles away. A landscaped cultural space was created around the pole, with 13 special lamp posts to reflect Saudi Arabia’s 13 governorates. The area includes a 26,000-square-metre representation of the two swords (each 75 metres long) and palm tree (85 metres tall) that make up the kingdom’s emblem.

The design is inspired by ripples on sand and represents the country’s natural oil resource with a clear depiction of the Saudi emblem to reflect power and creativity.

The direction to Mecca is illustrated in the events plaza, which is sheltered by palm trees planted in a crescent shape, creating an oasis around the flag.

The design of the site minimises the heat island effect as 35 per cent of the land area is covered with plants and the remaining surface area with highly reflective paving material.

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