Dana Krystle

Dana Krystle

Amman, JO


Zayed Shopping Center Intervention

Location : Abu Dhabi, UAE 
Competition : Zayed Shopping Center intervention.
Year : 2016
Intervention : Exterior, Interior, Landscape. 

Located in the heart of the city of Abu Dhabi, and bearing the name of our nation’s great founder Sheikh ZAYED bin Sultan Al Nahyan, Madinat ZAYED Shopping Center deserves to be revitalized to the high standard established for architectural excellence for structures throughout the country by it’s venerable namesake. 


The two decade old facility will be upgraded to provide the ideal shopping and family experience for existing and future customers. New facilities will provide entertainment in forms of fountains, mini-parks, play area for the children and weekly, monthly and yearly activities. Madinat ZAYED Shopping center was built in the style of the traditional style souq, the shopper will experience the traditional architecture and shopping experience while providing a safe and fun environment for their families.


Design philosophy :

This design philosophy will be implemented through the following : 

Exterior and Interior elements: Renovate the original ARABIAN ISLAMIC architecture of the facility with the expected comforts and technology of the 21st century, so as to blend the aesthetic beauty of our region’s history with modern consumer demands.

Environmental Responsibility:  Long-term cost-saving, environmentally-responsible measures will be implemented where possible with the proposed capital improvements to the overall facilities, including: solar energy panels (carport and rooftop panels), long-lasting thermal-barrier coatings to replace paint, replace old technology chillers with more energy-efficient equipment and better efforts to recycle waste in the initial phases.

Interior Design Theme:  Internal facility navigation will be improved not only through better signage and new branding, but also through an Al Gharbia-themed “zone” program for different areas of MZSC created to better recognition as to where one originally-entered MZSC.  Each zone will represent an area of the UAE and the Western Region by giving it a name so each zone will be a gathering area related to the UAE, keeping it easy to distinguish, Like, Ruwais, Ghayathi, Liwa, Sila…etc.

Restoring Aspect: In addition to the external and internal improvements to the entire MZSC facility, the gold souq shall be restored to the building’s original concept. This will bring back a more traditional style market/ souq. Such a design will expose shoppers in the Madinat Zayed Shopping center to our past ways of life while providing a new destination for tourists to experience.

Human and social aspect: At the heart of Madinat Zayed Shopping Center is a family gathering place and the preferred shopping district in the area. The goal is to expand on these aspects and to promote the cultural diversity in the UAE and program activities to better serve the local Abu Dhabi community.

Surrounding area: Improve the surrounding landscape with more foliage, add shade promenades, install more outdoor seating, maintain a wider perimeter (than the property line) of trash removal, including the pedestrian tunnel under Muroor Road.

Traffic Flow and Pedestrian Safety:  Work with Abu Dhabi Department of Transportation, Mawaqif and other relevant entities to ensure better traffic flow in and around MZSC.  Also, work with the same departments to gain approval to create safety access and walking areas to and from the surrounding environs by connecting MZSC in all directions from the facility, including from the nearby post office, Fish and Vegetable Market and parking areas. 

Urban: Being centrally located within the city, Madinat Zayed provides an ideal location for activities and festivals while providing a safe environment for the public. Furthermore, Madinat ZAYED is the perfect location to establish a tourist hub connecting MZSC as the Western region to the heart of the Emirate of Abu Dhabi.  Two directional bus tours will be launched to give residents and tourists a chance to take day trips from Madinat Zayed (town) to Madinat Zayed Shopping Centre (souk) to enjoy the best both destinations have to offer.

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Status: Competition Entry
My Role: Junior Architect | Designer
Additional Credits: The International House of Architecture| IHA 2017