The 2,349 square-metre structure, with a capacity for 1,300 worshippers, will produce at least 100% of the energy it needs over the course of a year using 1,590 m² of on-site PV panels.
Masdar City hopes to set a new industry standard for houses of worship in the region through an innovative design that blends environmental protection with cultural heritage and community building.
"We have designed and created several net-zero energy projects, but this one has particular significance for us and for me personally, particularly given we’re announcing it during COP28,” said Mohamed Al Breiki, Executive Director of Sustainable Development at Masdar City. "It will be more than a gathering place, a community hub, or a place of worship. It will take people on a cultural, spiritual, and environmental journey, serving as a powerful symbol of our commitment as responsible stewards of the earth. This mosque is our gift to the community.”
"Touching the earth lightly and helping others do the same is the very heartbeat of Masdar City,” said Lutz Wilgen, Masdar City’s head of design. "Integrating that heartbeat into a mosque was a unique challenge we were honoured to take on. After months of collaboration and consultation, we’ve created a design that seamlessly combines beauty, cultural significance, function, and sustainability.”
The 2,349 square-meter structure, with a capacity for 1,300 worshippers, will produce at least 100 per cent of the energy it needs over the course of a year using 1,590 m² of on-site PV panels. The mosque’s total energy requirements were reduced by 35 per cent compared to international baselines using passive design, an architectural approach that responds to environmental conditions.
The mosque’s main structure will be made primarily of rammed earth, and a series of tiered windows on the roof will allow the space to be illuminated with cascading natural light patterns. Outdoor colonnades will offer shade from the sun as worshippers transition from the outdoors to the sacred inner space.
"Each design choice is multi-faceted,” added Wilgen. "The rammed earth provides outstanding insulation, helping to keep hot air out and cool air in while also fostering a sense of place and belonging. It’s also cost-effective. A series of tiered, operable windows on the ceiling will help inspire wonder and reverence for worshippers while also creating a natural ventilation system that will make air conditioning optional in the winter months. This holistic approach, integrating environmental, social, and economic sustainability, is the essence of our methodology.”
The mosque will break ground in 2024, with the completion date to be announced in the coming months.
The new mosque is only one of several net-zero energy projects in Masdar City.
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