Landscape design, Francis Landscapes, Aljada, Sharjah

Landscape design for Zaha Hadid Architect's Aljada Central Hub to act as 'connector' says Francis Landscapes

Lebanon-based Francis Landscapes is the firm behind the landscape design for the Central Hub - the centrepiece of Aljada, a mixed-use development in Sharjah designed by Zaha Hadid Architects.

Set at 1.9 million feet (over 25 football fields in size), the development is defined by its lush green spaces, water features, as well as ZHA's futuristic concept that reflects the first moment a water droplet strikes the earth's surface.

This motion is captured through an array of elliptical buildings that are designed to channel prevailing winds into public spaces and courtyards to aid natural cooling during the hot summer months.

The Central Hub comprises of up to 732,000 square feet of green space, with the parks covering a quarter of the complex, and housing thousands of specially selected trees and plants.

The concept for the landscape design is to act as a 'connector' between various zones, from residential areas to the working and recreational zones. 

At the heart of the residential zoning is the development of a 'leisure park' which will focus on family-oriented activities. Aiming to transform the residential zone into a socially and environmentally sustainable neighbourhood park, with indoor and outdoor seating areas set amidst a verdant greenery to recreate a woodland garden.

The landscape design also includes a business park that focuses on creating a civic space, featuring plaza and gardens. 

The centre of the project, where the leisure and business parks intersect around the Observatory Tower, is the confluence of all the water features that flow throughout the development.