When compared to everything else in the world, the Makkah Clock Royal Tower Hotel can only be described in superlatives: the tallest hotel, the tallest clock tower, the largest clock face, the largest indoor space.
|Location||Mecca, Saudi Arabia|
|Solutions||Clock tower - 89 KONE MiniSpace™ elevators, 5 KONE MonoSpace® Special elevators, 16 KONE extra heavy-duty, high-efficiency Transvario escalators; Podium - 75 KONE MiniSpace™ elevators, 4 KONE MonoSpace® Special elevators, 111 KONE extra heavy-duty, high-efficiency Transvario escalators; Adjacent towers - 10 KONE MiniSpace™ elevators, 2 Helipad elevators, 6 KONE extra heavy-duty, high-efficiency Transvario escalators|
The holy city of Mecca, Saudi Arabia, is home to the world’s largest mosque, the Masjid Al Haram. The mosque can hold up to 600 000 people and is undergoing expansion to accommodate an additional one million people.
The Makkah Clock Royal Tower Hotel provides high quality accommodation and recreation for visitors to the mosque, situated directly adjacent to the hotel. The structure is made up of seven towers, which all rest upon a 15-story podium that includes a retail area. In one of its grandest undertakings, we delivered a People Flow® solution like no other.
Visitors to Mecca normally practice formal prayers five times per day. The goal is to ensure that up to 75,000 people can exit all 7 buildings through the podium in an organized and timely manner every prayer time.
This required a thorough study for optimum people flow solutions, resulting in an extraordinary amount of equipment. In addition, we implemented special group control software with artificial intelligence capabilities to learn and track passenger traffic patterns.
We also built up a strong team, pulling top-notch experts from all over KONE. I don’t think we have ever gone through such a rigorous design process, which lasted about 15 months.
KONE already has equipment in the Masjid Al Haram mosque. Our escalators have proven to be extremely reliable, and of the highest quality, contributing to our selection for the clock tower project.
With the hotel project complete, we turn our attention to the massive expansion project for the Masjid Al Haram mosque. We aim to deliver a solution that will soon be so large that its capacity alone, over 1.6 million people, will rival that of many cities around the world.
"There is nothing that comes even close to this people flow challenge. When you are in the mosque during peak times, all you see are rivers of people going up or down the escalators, before and after prayers," explains Tarek Elnaggar, Senior Vice President at KONE who was regional director for KONE Middle East during the project.