20 MAY 2018: When award-winning consultancy Omrania & Associates won the architecture, interiors and landscape design contract for the Riyadh Metro Western Station in 2011, it was the latest in a long line of milestones for the company.
Significantly, Omrania is the only design firm from the Arab world invited via competitive tender to work on any of the four ‘iconic’ stations being built on the Metro network. The fact it had secured the contract in the face of competition from the likes of Zaha Hadid, Snohetta and Gerber Architekten made the prize even sweeter for Al Shihabi and his team.
One of Saudi Arabia’s most admired architectural practices, Omrania’s design vision has inspired many of the most exceptional built environments created in Riyadh over the last 45 years, from Tuwaiq Palace to the GCC HQ, the Kingdom Centre to the Hilton Riyadh and the Capital Markets Authority (CMA) Tower, currently Riyadh’s tallest building. Having been established as a world-class, internationally-respected, inter-disciplinary practice in 1973, the company sees the Western Metro project award from Arriyadh Development Authority (ADA) as further endorsement of its competencies, capabilities and profound understanding of the Saudi environment.
“Normally, we team up with international companies and consortia. For the Western Station we were directly competing against an elite group of consultants for the first time, so we were very proud to win,” says Basem Al Shihabi, Omrania’s founder, managing director and chairman.
As well as enriching the company’s impressive portfolio, the Western Station will be an opportunity once again to showcase its ‘sustainability in design’ philosophy, which has been Omrania’s guiding principle since its early days.Subscribe to continue reading...