New York-based firm FXFOWLE has unveiled its design for a Museum of Built Environment in Riyadh, which will explore the region’s constructed landscape throughout history.
The 31,587m2 museum will be located near a large plaza bisected by a sunken pedestrian parkway. It will house galleries for permanent and temporary exhibitions, a 150-seat auditorium, and a restaurant, in addition to a monorail station and a network of skywalks.
Resembling a chiseled rock and partly clad in prismatic laminated glass panels, the building’s design was inspired by two UNESCO World Heritage Sites in Saudi Arabia: Mada’in Saleh, an ancient city featuring rock-cut architecture, as well as At-Turaif, a 15th-century complex made of adobe.
The architects say that the museum’s lower levels will be largely transparent, while its upper portion will be more opaque.
Site excavation for the museum has begun, with completion slated for 2012.