News archives

2003 News 

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Table of contents: 

January

February

March

April

May

June

July

August

September

October

November

December

 

Initiation of Projects

Construction work began on the Interpretation Center and Camping Facilities in the Mujib Reserve. Ammar Khammash Architects designed the project for the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature(RSCN). The project incorporates an example of straw bale architecture, and develops climatically driven solutions for an upmarket camping experience. The Jordanian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities is providing a 240,000 JD (338,000 $US) grant to RSCN for the construction of tourist facilities, the development of ecological tourism, and the support of ongoing handicraft projects in the reserve.

Construction work began on the site development of the historic Yarmuk Battle site in Saham, on the banks of the Yarmuk Valley in northern Jordan. Ammar Khammash Architects designed the project for the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. The project site covers an area of 10,000 square meters, with built-up areas of 110 square meters. Ammar Khammash Architects had been awarded first prize for the design of the project in a closed competition. Participants in the competition included Bilal Hammad Associates, Dr. Yaghmour and Associates Consulting Architects, and Tahhan and Bushnaq Architects.

Construction work began on the renovation of the Dhiban Governorate Building in Madaba. Bitar Consultants designed the 35,000 JD (49,000 $US) project for the Ministry of Public Works and Housing.

Construction work began on the Faculty of Engineering building at the University of Mu’tah. The 9,000 square-meter, 3-story building will include 16 lecture halls, 95 faculty offices, multipurpose halls, a library, and auditoriums. The project is expected to cost 1.4 million JD (around 1.97 million $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, January 13, 2003)

 Completed Designs

Mawshour completed designs for the addition of a new IVF Unit to the Arab Medical Center in the Fifth Circle area of Amman. The 525 square-meter addition is expected to cost 345,000 JD (around 486,000 $US).

The Amman office of the Riyadh-based consulting firm Omrania and Associates, in a joint venture with Almarsam Architects and Engineers, completed designs for the renovation and interior design works for the new Australian Embassy in Amman. The 2,000 square-meter project is expected to cost about 100,000 JD (around 140,000 $US).

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for the master plan of the Shallalah Housing Project located in the eastern part of Aqaba for ASEZA (Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority). Jafar Tukan and Partners had won a closed competition for the design of the project that includes relocating the informal settlement of Shallalah. The project, which aims at improving living conditions and infrastructure services for the inhabitants of the Shallalah area, will create a new 48,000 square-meter settlement that includes 1,000 residential units as well as comprehensive public service facilities. The total costs for the project are expected to reach 35 million JD (around 49 million $US).

New Commissions

Mounir Hajjiri and Partners were commissioned to design the 20,000 square-meter Harrods New Generation Tower in the Jabal Amman area of Amman for the Jordan British Investment Group. The project will include restaurants and shops.

Other News

In January 2003, Jafar Tukan became a partner at the Consolidated Consultants for Engineering and the Environment. His office of over 25 years, Jafar Tukan and Partners, consequently has merged with the Consolidated Consultants for Engineering and the Environment to form the Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect.

The 11 August Street ‘Cultural Avenue’ project in Amman’s Shmeisani district was awarded the Beautification Project of the Year Award by the Arab Towns Organization for the year 2002. The Amsterdam-based Tom Postma Design, in cooperation with the Engineering Department of the Municipality of Greater Amman, designed the refurbishment of the 360 meter-long street. The design includes landscaping, paving, street furniture, and a summer theater. The project was carried out at a total cost of about 600,000 JD (around 845,000 $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, January 8, 2003)

In an effort to increase green spaces in the city, the Municipality of Greater Amman has commenced planting 500,000 trees on 500 hectares of land within its municipal boundaries, focusing on the densely populated areas of the city. (Source: al-Ra'i, January 19, 2003)

Completed Projects

Construction work was completed on the Nature Center in the First Circle area of the Jabal Amman district in Amman. Ammar Khammash Architects designed the 1,550 square-meter building for the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN). The project, which has been funded by USAID (United States Agency for International Development), is intended as an urban destination that explains the concept of nature conservation and promotes related craft projects. The building occupies a dramatic location with a commanding view of old parts of Amman, including the downtown area and the Amman Citadel.

Construction work was completed on the second phase of the United Creations Garment Factory in the Wadi Dulayl QIZ (Qualified Industrial Zone, i.e. an area whose industrial products can be exported to the USA on advantageous terms). The 10,500 square-meter factory is designed by Darb (Design Associates and Research Bureau) for the United Creations Company Limited (an Indian - Egyptian joint venture). The project is located on a 32,000 square-meter plot of land, and consists of an 8,000 square-meter factory occupying two floors, and 2,500 square meters of workers’ accommodations occupying three floors. The structure incorporates a pre-cast, pre-stressed structural skeleton, and pre-cast façade panels.

Construction was completed on the Cultural Village at al-Hussein National Park in Amman. The Municipality of Greater Amman project occupies an area of 3,000 square meters and incorporates studios for Arabic calligraphy, stone carving, natural paints, hand-blown glass, and clay crafts, as well as exhibition halls. The 2.9 million JD (around 4.1 million $US) project also houses the Jordanian Pavilion of the Expo 2000 in Hanover. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 3, 2003)

The Municipality of Greater Amman inaugurated five public parks in Amman. The parks, which include open landscaped spaces, children’s playgrounds, seating areas, and computer centers, are located in the areas of Marka, Khreibat al-Suq, Umm Teena, Badir, and Shafa Badran. They are part of the municipality’s efforts at increasing green open spaces in the city. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 4, 2003)

Construction is nearing completion on the Dead Sea Tourist Project adjacent to the hotel zone located in Sweimeh, along the Dead Sea. The Municipality of Greater Amman project occupies an area of 14.6 hectares and incorporates kiosks, fast food restaurants, swimming pools, and 2 hectares of landscaped areas. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 18, 2003)

Completed Designs

Faris Bagaeen completed designs for al-Riyadh Group Office Building in the Wadi Saqra area of Amman. The 5,500 square-meter project is expected to cost 1.35 million JD (1.9 million $US).

Bilal Hammad Associates completed designs for the interior of the 210 square-meter Jordan - Kuwait Bank branch in the Jabal al-Hussein area of Amman.

Ammar Khammash Architects, in a joint venture with the Jordanian company Via Nova Group – New Dimensions for Profitable Sustainable Tourism, completed the Sustainable Tourism Development Plan for the Sultanate of Oman. The project includes the development of three sites as tourism destinations in the country. The tasks for the plan range from interpretation to physical intervention, and include the design of tourism products, socio-economic projects, and marketing plans.

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect, in association with architect Yasir Rajal, completed designs for Jordan Evangelical Theological Seminary campus located in Umm al-Usud in Badir al-Jadidah for the Jordan Evangelical Theological Seminary.

The project comprises several structures that include a college for biblical and theological studies, an administration building, a library, indoor and outdoor theaters, a student center, staff and student accommodations, as well as comprehensive service facilities. The project is expected to cost around 8.3 million JD (around 11.7 million $US)

Competitions

Mounir Hajjiri and Partners were invited to participate in a closed competition for the design of the University of Prince Muhammad bin Fahd in Khobar, Saudi Arabia. The design of the 12,000 square-meter campus aims at examining the impact of information technologies (IT) on campus planning, while focusing on the university as a nucleus for a new town.

News from Academia

The Egyptian Ministry of Culture and the International Union of Architects announced plans to publish a monograph on the international competition they had organized for the design of the Grand Egyptian Museum in Cairo. The monograph will feature a selection of the entries submitted for the competition. One of these is the entry presented by Yasir Sakr, Assistant Professor at the Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan.

Exhibitions 

The exhibition of the works of architect Sharif Fawwaz Al Muhanna (1906 – 1967) was displayed at the architectural department of the University of Jordan. Al Muhanna joined the Municipality of Amman in 1933 to become its first architect, and went on to establish Amman’s first architectural office in 1937. The exhibition includes a number of buildings he designed from the thirties until the early fifties. The exhibition also will be displayed at the architectural department of theJordan University of Science and Technology. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 24, 2003)

Other News

The Jordan River Foundation published Arabic and English versions of a monograph entitled Historical Trees of Jordan by Kamel Nueimat and Dina al-Kilani. The book provides visual and textual documentation of a number of Jordan's historical trees, many of which are centuries old. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 5, 2003)

Construction work is in progress on the Wadi Finan Wilderness Lodge in Wadi Finan in the Jordan Rift Valley region of Wadi Araba. Ammar Khammash Architects designed the project for the Royal Society for the Conservation of Nature (RSCN). The 2,200 square-meter project, which is located at the lower entrance of the Dana Nature Reserve, is surrounded by an archaeologically rich landscape. Wadi Finan has the remains of some of the world’s earliest archaeological sites of metallurgy, and contains remains of manganese smelting workshops that once thrived in this valley.

The design of the thirty-room lodge is based on studies of desert architecture. It uses ecologically sensitive architectural elements inspired by the traditional buildings of villages in Jordan, southern Morocco, and Yemen. The design aims at developing hybrid solutions based on the fusion of traditional materials and structural systems with contemporary building requirements and environmental design techniques. The project is part of the development plan for the Dana Reserve that is expected to cost 1 million JD (around 1.41 million $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, February 5, 2003)

Sigma Consulting Engineers carried out studies for the preliminary phase of the development of the Madaba city center for the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. The development plan will include the establishment of 20 heritage and tourist projects, 10 of which will be funded by the World Bank. (Source: al-Ra'i, February 24, 2003)

Completed Projects

Construction work was completed on the Infrastructure Development Project in the village of Wadi Musa near Petra for the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. CDG (Community Development Group Engineering and Management Associates) designed the 3,350 square-meter project, which cost 63,700 (around 89,700 $US). Jouzy and Partners Consulting Engineering Bureau provided engineering services, and Bitar Consultants carried out supervision services for the project.

 Construction work was completed on the interior of the E-Government Project Management office floor at the Ministry of Information and Communications Technology in Amman. CDG (the Community Development Group Engineering and Management Associates) designed the 650 square-meter project, which is funded by the Amir II program (Achievement of Market-Friendly Initiatives and Results program), an economic opportunity project funded by USAID (the United States Agency for International Development) and implemented in partnership with the Jordanian private sector and the Jordanian government. Bitar Consultants carried out the electro-mechanical design and supervision of the 49,700 JD (70,000 $US) project. The project is intended as an opportunity for the newly restructured ministry to create a space that serves as a “showcase” model for e-government.

Initiation of Projects

Construction work began on the restoration of the South Wall of the Aqsa Mosque in Jerusalem. The Ministry of Islamic Awqaf, Affairs and Holy Places is carrying out the 100,000 JD (around 141,000 $US) restoration work, which will include the stabilization of the wall and replacement of damaged stone. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 25, 2003)

 Completed Designs

Bilal Hammad Associates completed designs for the interiors of two branches of the Jordan - Kuwait Bank in Amman. The first is the 70 square-meter branch in Mecca Mall and the second is the 95 square-meter branch in Umm Udhaynah.

Bitar Consultants completed designs for al-Shakhsheer Center in Amman for al-Shakhsheer Group. They were awarded the contract after winning first prize in a closed competition for the design of the 9,000 square-meter project, which is expected to cost 2.4 million JD (around 3.4 million US). The design also includes interior and landscaping works.

Bitar Consultants completed designs for the external gate of the Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources in Amman. The project is expected to cost 15,000 JD (around 21,000 $US).

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for the master plan of the Aqaba Intercontinental Resort located in the city of Aqaba for the Social Security Corporation. The 43,000 square-meter project is expected to cost 26 million JD (around 37 million $US).

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for an administration building for the Arab Pharmaceutical Manufacturing Company in the city of Salt. The 2,150 square-meter project is expected to cost 600,000 JD (845,000 $US).

 New Commissions

Tahhan and Bushnaq Architects were commissioned to design the ‘Abd al-Rahman bin 'Awf Mosque in the Jubayhah area in Amman for the Ministry of Islamic Awqaf, Affairs and Holy Places. Tahhan and Bushnaq Architects earlier had been awarded first prize in a closed competition for the design of the 1,700 square-meter project, which is expected to cost 500,000 JD (around 704,000 $US).

News from Academia

Six students received their bachelor's degrees in architecture from the Applied Sciences University in Amman.

Other News

CDG (Community Development Group Engineering and Management Associates) completed the Labor Housing Implementation Report on the 8-hectare al-Shamiyyah area in Aqaba for ASEZA (Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority). The report was produced by CDG for the Aqaba Technical Assistance Support Project (ATASP), which USAID(United States Agency for International Development) is funding. The report explores possibilities for developing affordable housing on vacant public land, stimulating housing production through public-sector interventions, and creating sustainable residential communities.

Completed Projects

Construction work was completed on the refurbishment of the Ministry of Information and Communication Technology building in Amman. Bitar Consultants carried out the interior and landscape designs for the 7,000 square–meter project, which cost 2.4 million JD (around 3.4 million $US).

The renovation and conversion of the abandoned Haifa Hotel building in downtown Amman was completed. Art collector Mamduh Bisharat privately financed the conversion of the building to serve as a heritage museum and cultural salon. The building, which dates back to the 1920s, previously housed the Jordanian Post and later the Ministry of Finance, before being converted into the Haifa Hotel in the 1950s, which it remained for about four decades. It consists of several small halls in addition to a large salon that presently displays artwork, photographs, and crafts from Bisharat’s private collection. (Source: al-Ra'i, April 17, 2003)

 Initiation of Projects

The Salt Greater Municipality invited tenders for the implementation of the development of the historic parts of the city. The project is part of a strategic plan for developing tourism in Amman, Salt, Karak, Madaba, and the Dead Sea, and will include the development of tourist streets, trails, and observations areas, as well as the conservation and rehabilitation of a number of heritage buildings, the best known of which is the early twentieth-century Abu Jabir House, which will be converted into a visitor’s center and heritage museum. The project, which is expected to cost about 3.5 million JD (around 5 million $US), is funded by the Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) and the Japan Bank for International Cooperation, and is being implemented by the Jordanian Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities and the Salt Development Corporation. (Source: al-Ra'i, April 16, 2003)

The Municipality of Greater Amman is removing kiosks from the Raghdan Bus Terminal in the center of the city in preparation for the reconstruction of the bus terminal, which is due to start in June. TheJapanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is funding the 7 million JD (around 9.9 million $US) project as part of the Comprehensive Development Plan for the city center. Construction for the terminal will include a multistory building located on the 3.5-hectare site, as well as buildings that will house offices for the Civil Defense Department, the Police Force, the Municipality of Greater Amman, and the Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities. The project is scheduled for completion in December 2004. (Source: The Jordan Times, April 20, 2003)

Completed Designs

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect, in association with the Ankara-based Aysel Insaat Taahhut Ticaret, completed designs for the new general headquarters complex of the Jordanian Armed Forces in Amman. The design for the site, which borders al-Hussein Medical City, includes an 8,880 square-meter headquarters building, a 400 square-meter mosque, and a gymnasium.

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for the 950 square-meter Pochte Annex Building in Luanda, Angola for the Space Group of Korea / Mazen Qsous.

New Commissions

Arabtech-Jardaneh Consulting Engineers and Architects, in association with Universal Hospital Services (UHS) and the Arab Center For Engineering Studies (ACES), were commissioned to design the renovation and upgrading of the operating theaters at the King Hussein Hospital / al-Hussein Medical City in Amman for the Jordanian Armed Forces / Royal Medical Services. The project includes the preparation of detailed engineering services, as well as tender documents for the 2,900 square-meter project. The project includes redesigning the operating area to increase its capacity from six to eleven operating theaters, providing new stairs and service elevators, and renovating the existing electrical and mechanical systems.

Arabtech-Jardaneh Consulting Engineers and Architects, in association with Universal Hospital Services (UHS) and the Arab Center For Engineering Studies (ACES), were commissioned to design the renovation and upgrading of the gynecology and obstetrics department at the King Hussein Hospital / al-Hussein Medical City in Amman for the Jordanian Armed Forces / Royal Medical Services. The 4,670 square-meter project will expand the present structure to incorporate two operating theaters, an IVF section, a royal suite, a neonatal section with a capacity of fifteen incubators, and two patient wards.

An agreement was signed between the Jordanian Social Security Corporation (SSC) and SIGMA Consulting Engineers for the preparation of designs and studies for the interior design and furnishing of the SSC headquarters and convention hall in the al-Hussein Suburb in Amman. The 10-story building is located on a 4,600 square-meter site with a total floor area of 27,000 square meters. The project includes the building’s offices, convention center, exhibition halls, and landscaping. (Source: al-Ra'i, April 21, 2003)

 News from Academia

Ehab Abdo successfully defended his master’s thesis at the Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan. The thesis is entitled The Role of Contemporary Arab Thought in the Structure of Regional Architecture.

Hikmat Hammad, assistant professor at the Department of Architecture at the Jordan University of Science and Technology in Irbid, participated in the Energy Efficiency Workshop held in Larnaka, Cyprus. The workshop was organized by the Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) in collaboration with the American University of Beirut (AUB). 

Exhibitions 

The Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts in Amman held an exhibition of photographs entitled al-Quds al-Sharif: Muslim Artefacts of the Old City. The exhibition features 33 photographs of Jerusalem taken between 1890 - 1925, and currently part of the collection of the Ecole Biblique et Archeologique Francaise de Jerusalem. The exhibition already has toured Paris, Riyadh, and Jeddah. (Source: The Jordan Times, April 23, 2003)

Other News

Almarsam Architects and Engineers launched their web site atwww.almarsam.net.

The building industry in Jordan showed considerable growth during the first quarter of 2003. According to a statistical bulletin issued by the Central Bank of Jordan, 1,479 building permits covering a total area of 524,000 square meters were issued in January 2003. This is a 16% rise in the number of building permits and an 8.5% rise in the overall licensed building areas in comparison to January 2002. About 90% of the permits and 85% of the areas licensed for building are for residential purposes. (Source: The Jordan Times, April 20, 2003)

The Municipality of Greater Amman has launched a campaign to regulate the placement of billboards and advertising signs in downtown Amman. The municipality is removing signs that have been put up without a permit as part of a plan to halt the random spread of signs along the city’s main streets. The municipality is in the process of preparing new regulations for neon-lit road signs, and other special signs to ensure traffic safety and to prevent traffic accidents resulting from the improper placement of these signs on medians and pavements. All such signs must be removed within a month of their permit expiry on December 31, 2003, when the new regulations come into effect. (Source: al-Ra'i, April 30, 2003)

May 2003 

 

Table of Contents:

1. Completed Projects

2. Initiation of Projects

3. Completed Designs 

4. New Commissions

5. Competitions

6. Exhibitions

7. Other news

Completed Projects

The Municipality of Greater Amman inaugurated the intersection of Wasfi al-Tall and al-Sharif Nasser streets. The project aims at addressing problems of traffic congestion at the area known as the "Safeway junction" through restructuring the existing traffic-light intersections into non-intersecting overpasses and underpasses. This project is the latest of a series of such traffic intersection projects that have been carried out in Amman over the past two and a half decades, and that aim at relieving traffic congestion in the city. The project cost 1.13 million JD (around 1.6 million $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, May 8, 2003)

Construction work was completed on the Ahl al-Kahf junction, at the intersection of al-Hizam, Sahab, Abu ‘Alanda, and al-Aqmar streets in eastern Amman. The Municipality of Greater Amman carried out the construction of the 270-meter-long, six-lane, two-way underpass stretching on Abu ‘Alanda Street, in addition to free loops that guarantee an unobstructed flow of traffic in all four directions. The 2.8 million JD (around 4 million $US) project is the latest of a series of such traffic intersection projects that have been constructed in Amman over the past two and a half decades as part of the municipality’s overall plan to alleviate traffic congestion problems in the city. (Source: al-Ra'i, May 21, 2003)

Initiation of Projects

Construction work was initiated on the Sakkab Construction Material Factory in Sahab near Amman. Darb (Design Associates and Research Bureau) designed the 6,000 square-meter project comprising a two-floor steel factory that includes offices and a showroom.

Construction work was initiated on the Baccalaureate intersection in the area of Dabuq just outside Amman, along al-Hijaz Street, which leads to the town of Fuheis. The project, which is named after the adjacent Amman Baccalaureate School, is expected to cost 2.2 million JD (3.1 million $US), and includes a 400-meter-long, four-lane, two-way tunnel. The Municipality of Greater Amman project is co-funded by theMinistry of Public Works and Housing, the Amman Baccalaureate School, and the Jordan Cement Factories Company. (Source: al-Ra'i, May 13, 2003)

ASEZA (the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority) signed an agreement with the National Engineering and Contracting Company for the development of infrastructure services in al-Shamiyyah area, located in the northern parts of Aqaba. The 70-hectare development aims at providing infrastructure services for the low-income housing projects to be constructed in the area as part of an effort to improve social and economic conditions for its inhabitants, and to organize and upgrade informal settlements in Aqaba. The 2 million JD (2.8 million $US) project is carried out in association with the Ministry of Planningand the Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDC). (Source: al-Ra'i, May 13, 2003)

The Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs will start implementing a 22 million JD (around 31 million $US) beautification project for Jordan’s cities. The amount of 3.5 million JD (around 5 million $US) has been allocated for the execution of the first stage of the project, which will take place in 2003. The plan, which will include all municipalities in Jordan, covers architectural renovation, increased landscaping, consolidation of street paving and lighting systems, as well as the creation of parks and playgrounds. (Source: The Jordan Times, May 30, 2003)

 Completed Designs

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect, in association with the Angolan firm Sigma Gibb, completed designs for a Convention Complex in Luanda, Angola for the Sonangol Oil and Gas Company. The 21,340 square-meter project is expected to cost around 7.1 million JD (10 million $US).

New Commissions

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan were commissioned to design the new Ministry of Agriculture Building in Amman for the Jordanian Ministry of Agriculture. The project will occupy an area of 20,000 square meters and is expected to cost 7 million JD (around 9.9 million $US).

Competitions

Tahhan and Bushnaq Architects, in association with the Consulting Engineering Center (CEC), were awarded first prize in an international competition for the design of the Municipality of San’a building in San’a, Yemen. The 20,000 square-meter project is expected to cost 7.1 million JD (10 million $ US).

Sahel Al-Hiyari and Partners were awarded first prize in a competition for the design of the Sand Lofts project in Kuwait. Al-Majma’a Real Estate Company organized the competition for the design of the 28,000 square-meter high-rise project, which will include residential, commercial, and parking facilities, as well as a health spa.

News from Academia

Ashraf al-Ajjur successfully defended his master’s thesis at the Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan. The thesis is entitled The Impact of Socio-Cultural Disjunction on Built Environment Interpretation.

Thaer Haj-Ahmad received the 2003 Ibrahim and Viviane Jammal Prize for the Best Thesis or Project on an International or Global Topic by theSchool of Architecture and Planning at the University of Buffalo for his thesis entitled A Paradigm for Developing the Historic Arabic City.

Janset Shawash successfully defended her master’s thesis at the Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan. The thesis is entitled Architecture in Amman During the Emirate of Transjordan, 1921 – 1946.

The Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan held the First Architectural Week from 19 – 22 May. The four-day event included a workshop entitled the Making of Architecture, and lectures by architects Ayman Zuaiter, principal of Tibah Consultants, and Jafar Tukan, partner, Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect. Exhibitions of the art and architectural work of students and graduates of the department also were held as part of the event.

The Department of Architecture at the Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) in Irbid hosted the annual meeting of the founding members of the Arab Architectural Exhibition for Graduation Projects. Fuad Malkawi, assistant professor and chairman of the Department of Architecture at JUST, was chosen as coordinator for the upcoming exhibition to be held in Tunis in 2004. The Department of Architecture at JUST had initiated the idea of the exhibition and organized the first one in October 1999.

The Department of Architecture at the Jordan University of Science and Technology (JUST) in Irbid held its graduation project jury for the class of 2003. Fifty-three projects were discussed with jury members from Jordan, as well as Syria and Lebanon.

Exhibitions 

The Jordan National Gallery of Fine Arts in Amman held a sculpture exhibition featuring works by Spanish artist Miquel Navarro entitled City in Your Hands. The exhibition creates sculptural landscapes through installations that stage various elements, blending sculpture and architecture together. The exhibition was organized in cooperation with the cultural department at La Generalitat Valenciana, Consorci de Museus de la Comunitat Valenciana, the Spanish Embassy in Amman, and the Cervantes Institute. (Source: The Jordan Times, May 18, 2003)

Other news

 The Jordan Engineers Association (JEA) will start a review of the amended building code for Amman. The review aims at developing a work plan for the implementation of the clauses pertaining to the JEA’s role in the review of relevant design and construction documents. JEA also will explore the possibility of introducing professional indemnity insurance on engineering projects for the protection of consulting offices. (Source: al-Ra'i, May 28, 2003)

Completed Projects

Construction work was completed on the interior of a branch of the Arab Banking Corporation (ABC) in the Wihdat area of Amman. Mawshour designed the 295 square-meter project, in cooperation with the Consulting Engineering Center (CEC). The project cost around 228,000 JD (around 321,000 $US).

The Municipality of Greater Amman inaugurated three public parks in Amman. The projects, which cost a total of 500,000 JD (700,000 $US), include the Princess Salma Library and IT center in Abu Nuseir, the Shafa Badran playgrounds in Shafa Badran, and the Safiyyah bint ‘Abd al-Muttalib gardens in al-Quwaysmah. The projects include open landscaped spaces, children’s playgrounds, soccer and basketball courts, and seating areas. The Princess Salma center is situated on a 1.1 hectare site, and includes a library, computer center, and lecture halls. The Shafa Badran and al-Quwaysmah parks are 8,000 and 5,000 square meters in area, respectively. The parks are part of the municipality’s efforts that aim at increasing green open spaces in the city. (Source: The Jordan Times, June 4, 2003)

Construction is nearing completion on Marina Town, the first phase of the Tala Bay Tourist Complex in Aqaba. The 30,000 square-meter marina comprises a 60-yacht harbor, a 149-unit residential complex, and a commercial center. The Tala Bay project, which is owned by the Jordan Projects for Tourism Development Company, occupies a total area of 2.7 million square meters, and is expected to cost 355 million JD (500 million $US). The US firm Ellerbe Becket designed the master plan for the project. (Source: The Jordan Times, June 23, 2003)

Completed Designs

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for a fifteen-story office building in Tripoli, Libya for the Libyan Consulting National Office. The 16,000 square-meter building, which is expected to cost over 6.4 million JD (around 9 million $US), will include offices, a shopping mall, and a covered recreational area.

The Consolidated Consultants - Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for the National Library, located on Queen Alia Street in Amman. The 13,000 square-meter project will cost over 4.6 million JD (around 6.5 million $US).

The Amman office of the Riyadh-based Omrania and Associatescompleted designs for the Aqaba Arcade, the Aqaba Produce Market, and a mosque for ASEZA (the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority) in Aqaba. The firm was commissioned to carry out the work after being awarded first prize in a closed competition organized for the project.

New Commissions

Bitar Consultants were awarded the contract for refurbishing the Arab Jordan Investment Bank branches in Amman after winning first prize in a closed competition organized for the project. The 2,000 square-meter projects will include interior and landscaping designs, and are expected to cost 700,000 JD (around 986,000 $US).

 News from Academia

Reem al-Abbasi successfully defended her master’s thesis at the Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan. The thesis is entitled The Effect of Local Culture on the Shaping of Architectural Identity.

The Department of Architecture at the University of Jordan organized an exhibition of graduation projects for newly graduated students at the department. 

The Higher Institute for Islamic Art and Architecture at Al al-Bayt University in al-Mafraq organized an Architectural Day that featured an exhibition of works by students of architecture at the university. Ayman Zuaiter, principal of Tibah Consultants, presented a lecture entitled The Essence in Architecture as part of the event. (Source: al-Ra'i, June 5, 2003)

Other news

Royal Jordanian (RJ), Jordan’s national airlines, commissioned a short documentary film about modern residential architecture in Jordan as part of RJ’s in-flight entertainment. The film features the work of Almarsam Architects and Engineers as an example of current trends in the design of villas in Amman.

A task force organized by the Municipality of Greater Ammanrecommended immediate governmental action to build three major cities to the east of Amman to help absorb expected population growth in the coming years, while protecting the agricultural land to the west of the city. The study recommended redirecting urban development towards the east, and developing legislation that would ensure an end to urban incursions into agricultural lands.

According to the study, the newly created urban areas should be able to absorb 8 million people over the next 40 years, with an average density of 15 persons per square kilometer. The study also recommends that a subway network be constructed to connect these new settlements.

Two levels of management will be put in place for administering the expanded region. Accordingly, policy-making, planning, and financial administration would be the responsibility of the Municipality of Greater Amman, while local municipal committees would handle the licensing of buildings, planning, zoning, and road maintenance. (Source: The Jordan Times, June 8, 2003)

Representatives of Saudi-Oger, the Riyadh-based construction company, signed an official agreement with the state-run MAWARED (The National Resources Investment and Development Corporation), which is administering the 1.2 billion JD (1.7 billion $US) ‘Abdali Regeneration Project in Amman. According to the agreement, MAWARED and Saudi-Oger will form a joint venture that would take the form of a Jordanian public-share holding company to manage the project.

The project is located on a 33.4-hectare state-owned land that contained the headquarters of the Jordanian Armed Forces and other security agencies. These are being relocated to other areas of Amman in order to transform the site into a multipurpose district that will include a new university (the American University of Amman) on one third of the site, and a multipurpose development that will include residential and commercial areas in the remaining two thirds of the site.

The ‘Abdali project is expected to attract considerable private sector investment because of its strategic location between the downtown area and Shmeisani, the capital’s financial district.

Demolition works have started on the project, which is expected to take six to nine years before completion. Construction work is not expected to begin until the end of this year. (Source: The Jordan Times, June 23, 2003)

 

 

Completed Projects

Construction is nearing completion on the substitute Bus Terminal in al-Mahattah district, which will take over the functions of Amman’s main bus terminal, the Raghdan Bus Terminal, as it undergoes a process of rehabilitation that is expected to take two years. The Japanese International Cooperation Agency (JICA) is funding the 250,000 JD (352,000 $US) Municipality of Greater Amman substitute terminal project as part of the Comprehensive Development Plan for the city center. (Source: al-Ra'i, July 23, 2003)