Saudi’s newly launched King Salman Charter for Architecture and Urbanism was created with the aim of creating memorable buildings and spaces. The Saudi Architecture and Design Commission project hopes to bring these structures and spaces to life via a set of recommendations that encourage the integration of cultural and national identity into contemporary designs. The guidelines also meet the needs of local communities.
The charter draws upon the Salmani architecture, a methodology that builds on the lessons learned from Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques, King Salman Bin Abdulaziz. The ruler served over five decades as governor of the Riyadh region.
One of the commission's flagship initiatives, the charter was inaugurated in a ceremony attended by representatives of governmental entities, senior officials from the Ministry of Culture and leading architects and designers from the Kingdom.
Dr Sumayah Al-Solaiman, the CEO of the Architecture and Design Commission, said the charter’s instigation is a major step for the growth of Saudi’s architecture and design field. She added it acts as a national methodology for achieving urban excellence and improving everybody’s quality of life.
"By creating urban environments that reflect our cultural and natural heritage, we are showing pride in our identity and embracing it for future generations. Our aim is to inspire architects and designers to create innovative and unique designs that tell stories of our past, reflect our national identity and inspire future generations," said the head of the commission that enacts a range of programmes and initiatives designed to enhance and support a cultural ecosystem that embraces and encourages local talent.
The Architecture and Design Commission, one of 11 sector commissions overseen by the Saudi Ministry of Culture, is also hosting an exhibition to highlight top projects that reflect the Salmani architecture and showcase several award-winning architectural gems. Being held at Riyadh’s Tuwaiq Palace, the exhibition will be open to the public until the end of December.
There are plans for the charter’s values to be exported and activated throughout the Kingdom. Additionally, it is hoped it will become a reference point and source of inspiration for sector professionals in other parts of the world.