UAE: Jebel Hafeet project deploys UPC mosque codes
Eight mosques under construction within the Jebel Hafeet Emirati Housing Project are being built to Abu Dhabi UPC's Mosque Development Regulations
The first community to deploy Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council's (UPC) Abu Dhabi Mosque Development Regulations (ADMDR) is under development in Al Ain.
Eight mosques under construction within the Jebel Hafeet Emirati Housing Project are being built to ADMDR standards.
The design of the mosques, including the designated use, building materials, and sustainability features, were evaluated by the UPC to ensure compliance with the ADMDR.
Introduced in 2011, and in line with the UPC’s Complete Sustainable Communities directive, the ADMDR is the UPC’s Emirate-wide regulatory framework that addresses the planning, design, construction, operations and maintenance of each mosque to ensure best practice standards are applied during its complete life cycle.
The ADMDR will ensure that mosques are easily accessible for all worshippers, whether local residents or visitors. It encourages the co-location of other facilities with the mosque to create vibrant, active community focal points. The regulations apply to the design, construction and operation of both new mosques and refurbished existing mosques.
Among its requirements, the number of mosques within a development is carefully set in accordance with expected population and demographics, the architectural design must be faithful to the vernacular Emirati style, and they must achieve a minimum 2 Pearl Rating under the UPC’s Estidama Pearl Rating System (PRS).
Mohamed Al Khadar, executive director of the Urban Development and Estidama Sector at UPC, remarked: “We are very proud to see the successful implementation of the Abu Dhabi Mosque Development Regulations in the design of the mosques, which ensure that a regulatory framework exists to safeguard the development of mosques across the Emirate that represent our local identity.
“The Jebel Hafeet Emirati Housing Project will be a thriving community where residents are within walking distance to a mosque and are able to worship in a comfortable, attractive and safe environment.
"The way that the mosques have been incorporated into the plans sets an extremely high standard and should serve as a model for other real estate developers to emulate," he added.
Developed by Tamouh Investments under the project management of Abu Dhabi General Services Company (Musanada), the community comprises 3,000 villas, besides schools, a health facility, and retail outlets.
The 4.4 million m2 development is in the final stages of construction, and is scheduled for handover this year.
The number of mosques at the Jebel Hafeet project was increased from that specified in the initial proposal to ensure each mosque is large enough to meet the needs of the total population of the community.
The eight mosques will be jame’e mosques, where Friday prayers are held, of which three will be delivered as the housing project is completed, with the remainder to be delivered in the future.
Once open to worshippers, the mosques will be operated and maintained according to the guidelines of the ADMDR.
The document provides standards for Awqaf, the General Authority of Islamic Affairs and Endowments, and the Imam responsible for the mosque on everything from opening and closing times to sound management.
It also sets out guidelines for maintenance contractors in areas such as internal and external cleaning and landscape maintenance.