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Watch: The Makkah Grand Mosque In 2030

Already the largest mosque in the world, Masjid al Haram in Makkah looks more magnificent in a video shared on YouTube with significant changes dotting the entire area. Read More

Wednesday September 13, 2023 12:39 PM, ummid.com News Network

Watch: How Makkah Grand Mosque Will Look In 2030

Makkah: An impressive look of the Grand Mosque in Makkah in 2023 when the ongoing expansion is scheduled to complete has been released online.

Already the largest mosque in the world, Masjid al Haram in Makkah looks more magnificent in a video shared on YouTube with significant changes dotting the entire area.

Construction is currently underway around the mosque to accommodate the expansion project. The expansion is part of Saudi Vision 2030, so it’s more likely that we’ll see the model become a reality in 2030.

Currently, close to 2.5 million Muslims from around the world perform the annual Hajj. The number of pilgrims coming for the annual pilgrimage is managed by allotting quota based on the population of Muslims in different countries.

Besides the annual pilgrimages, hundreds of thousands of Muslim travel to Makkah to perform Umrah, the number reaching peak during the Holy Month of Ramadan.

Saudi Arabia has planned a $100 billion expansion project in Makkah that will allow 30 million pilgrims to perform Hajj at the same time by the year 2030.

Makkah Haram Expansion Project is part of Saudi Crown Prince Mohammad bin Salman’s ambitious "Saudi Vision 2030”. The plan envisions to "reduce Saudi Arabia's dependence on oil, diversify its economy, and develop public service sectors such as health, education, infrastructure, recreation and tourism."

The ongoing expansion of the Grand Mosque is 3rd undertaken by the Saudi regime. The last renovation took place in 2015 following a royal decree issued by King Salman bin AbdulAziz Al Saud.

The video shared online shows Al Haram Mosque Main building extension, new courtyards, pedestrian tunnels, Central Services Station at Al Haram Mosque and also the ring road surrounding the Makkah Mosque.

After the latest expansion, Makkah Haram Mosque area will increase by two-third to reach an estimated area of 1.5 million square meters.

Haram Expansion Project – Timeline

1926: Soon after uniting different provinces of the Kingdom and foundation of Saudi Arabia, King Abdulaziz ordered a complete renovation to the Grand Mosque, including a directive to cover the entire floor with marble in 1926.

A year later, according to the General Presidency of the Two Holy Mosques, the King ordered marquees to be erected at the Mataf (circumambulation space) to protect worshippers from the sun’s heat. He also ordered that the Masa, the area between Safa and Marwah where pilgrims walk in what is known as Saee, be paved with stone.

1955: When King Saud took over the reins of the Kingdom, the Grand Mosque covered approximately 28,000 square meters. In 1955, he launched a long-term expansion project that continued for nearly 10 years. The size of the Masa was increased, and an underground area and another floor were added.

Saud’s successor, King Faisal, continued the expansion and development work. The building surrounding the Maqam Ibrahim was removed to provide more space for worshippers while circumambulating the Kaaba.

1975: After Khalid bin Abdulaziz became King in 1975, the Mataf area was expanded and the stone pavement of the Masa was replaced with Greek, heat-resistant marble so that worshippers could circle the Kaaba more comfortably, especially at noon.

1988: King Fahd laid the foundation stone for the largest expansion of the Grand Mosque in 14 centuries on September 14, 1988. The project increased the Makkah Haram size to 356,000 square meters, enough space for up to 1.5 million worshippers to comfortably perform their rituals. Two minarets were added to the existing seven.

1996: King Fahd during his rule also ordered complete renovation, in fact full re-construction, of Kaaba, the House of Allah, in 1996. The decision to reconstruct Kaaba was taken as its roof and walls were decaying and had developed cracks. During this reconstruction of the cube shaped Kaaba the only original thing left are the stones. All other materials have been replaced including the ceiling and the roof and its wood.

Before the reconstruction of Kaaba in 1996, the House of Holy was renovated or built entirely 12 times, according to historians.

2005: King Abdullah, who took the throne in 2005, initiated another major expansion project. It included architectural, technical, and security improvements. The capacity of the Mataf area was increased from about 50,000 people an hour to more than 130,000 to cope with the growing numbers of Hajj and Umrah pilgrims.

The total space covered by the Grand Mosque and its open areas and facilities increased to 750,000 square meters, at a total cost of more than SR80 billion ($21.3 billion) after the expansion ordered by King Abdullah.

2015: In 2015, King Salman launched five major projects designed to allow the mosque to accommodate nearly 2 million worshippers on a 1.5-million-square-meter site.

During this phase of Haram expansion, the Ottoman-era domes, which were removed to expand the Mataf (circumambulation area) at the Grand Mosque in Makkah, were restored.

2017: Saudi Vision 2030 was launched on April 25, 2016. A number of development projects were included under this including the ongoing Haram expansion launched in October 2017.

The Kingdom by a Royal Decree formed a company, Rou'a Al Haram, to oversee the Haram Expansion that will increase the capacity of the Grand Mosque in Makkah to accommodate more than 30 million pilgrims by 2030.

Rou'a Al Haram besides raising the quality of services in the local hospitality sector has been tasked to improve the quality of development in the areas surrounding the Grand Mosque, making it among the best examples of development worldwide.

[With inputs from Arab News and Saudi Press Agency - SPA]

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