Competition Results:

Competition Objective

The Abdulrahman Al Sudairy Cultural Centre (AACC) is hosting an international open competition for the redevelopment of the existing Dar Al-Uloum Public Library and surrounding campus located in Sakaka, Al Jouf Region. The call for a redevelopment stems from a desire to reinvigorate new life into the library in order to make the Centre once again a meaningful public place to promote learning and community engagement.

Like so many institutions of intellectual and cultural value, such as publishing houses, newspaper companies, and universities, the library finds itself on a precipice at the dawn of a digital era. As digital technology proliferates the means with which people access and share information, libraries no longer attract visitors solely through the accumulation of books. Libraries are expanding their role to increasingly function as community and/or cultural centers.

Accordingly, the Dar Al-Uloum Initiative aims to rethink the library’s functions and transform the interior of Dar Al-Uloum from a storage space for books, to a more open and flexible social space. Dar Al-Uloum aspires to become a pit stop for cultural flow and activity, where people can gain access diverse activities such as: lectures, conferences, meetings, reading clubs, art exhibits, workshops, film festivals and work spaces.

As the headquarters for the AACC organization, the library has symbolic significance both being the first development and for its prominent location along a major artery of the City of Sakaka. Dar Al-Uloum Library is just one part of a larger vision of public infrastructure within the region, to provide engaging programs and services to the local community. In Sakaka, the collection of infrastructure includes the Al Rahmaniyah Mosque, Al Rahmaniah Primary and Secondary Schools and Al Nusl Hotel.

In addition to bringing the library up to date in terms of programing and services, the aim is to connect these currently isolated establishments in order to form a holistic campus. The themes of connectivity and efficiency should be carried throughout the design proposals in order to maximize the community and educational spaces and consolidate collections. Energy efficiency and sensitivity to cultural and human comfort are additional factors that the schemes shall address in technically and economically feasible proposals.

The intent of the competition is to select a design team to enter into a contract of Design Development and Implementation Phase, which is to be developed in accordance to the submitted Schematic Design proposal. Design proposals should aim to renovate and rehabilitate the existing library and to incorporate elements of the old to be preserved in the new design.

The competition to redesign the Dar Al-Uloum library will support AACC to continue serving its mission to provide interactive cultural and informative programs and services to the local community.

Competition Overview


All teams that fulfill the qualification requirements are eligible to participate.A minimum of one person and / or a legal entity which are in legal capacity to practice architecture in their country of registration.


1st Prize 50,000 USD + contract

2nd Prize 37,500 USD

3rd Prize 25,000 USD


  • The language of the competition brief and the competition is English.
  • All explanatory text and additional texts (headings, labels, legends, etc.) shall be in English.
  • All official documents to be submitted shall be in English.
  • All questions submitted shall be in English and all responses will be posted in English.


Required Competition Documents  

Eight landscape A0 panels (841 x 1189 mm)

  1. Site plan, scale 1:500
  2. All floor plans, scale 1:200
  3. Minimum 2 sections, scale 1:200
  4. All main elevations, scale 1:200
  5. At least four 3D representations
  6. Technical conceptual sections
  7. Additional diagrams
  8. 1000 word text file
  9. Summary text file

Registration Process 

All applicants must register online through our website in order to join the mailing list and receive necessary updates for the competition. Applicants will also receive a numerical competition code following registration which will be used for marking submissions to ensure anonymity of all submission.


Registration Date: April 15th, 2018

Submission Process

All entries shall be submitted through courier to the address found below. All required document shall be labeled with the assigned numerical competition code to ensure anonymity.

Submission Date May 30th


Postal Address

Abdulrahman Al Sudairy Cultural Centre
Riyadh 11614
P.O.Box 94781
Tel: 011 281 7094
Fax: 011 281 1357
Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Digital Submission Instructions 

All required documents shall be saved under one zip file and labeled with the assigned numerical competition code to ensure anonymity. The zip file shall be uploaded via Wetransfer.



Message Title: Assigned Competition Code

Digital Files

Digital drawings in a dwg format will be used for competition purposes only. A site survey and redrawing of the documents will be required for construction purposes.

The following drawings should be provided:

  • Site Plan
  • Plan Level 01
  • Plan Level 02
  • East – West Section
  • North – South Section
  • North, South, East and West Elevations

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. QUALIFYING What are the requirements for qualifying?? In order to qualify for the award, a minimum of one person and/ or a legal entity which are in legal capacity to practice architecture in their country of registration should be part of the team. 

2. REGISTRATION: I filled out the form online but haven’t received a confirmation or a registration code, is there a problem? Do I need to register all members of my team?

No, you are fine. The confirmation and registration code are sent separately. If you filled out the form online, then you are already registered. If you haven’t received a registration code yet, you will receive an email with your registration code soon.

Please note, one registration is enough for the entire team.

3. MATERIALS: How can I get 3D and 2D CAD Files?

All material for this competition will be made available on the website. You will receive an update if new material is uploaded. The files provide approximate accuracy, they are not 100% accurate.

4. UPGRADE Vs. REBUILD: Can we demolish the entire building?

One of the objectives of the competition is to preserve the original structure, and upgrade and redesign the façade and interior as needed. However, it is up to the architect to offer a recommendation on whether to rebuild the library entirely or partially.

5. PROGRAMMING: Is prospective programming in addition to original spaces in the library? No, the prospective programming is inclusive of all spaces (old and new). The future design

should not include additional programming beyond prospective programming listed.

6. BUILDING SIZE: How big should the new building be?

The current area of the library building is 3,703 sqm. The ambition is to grow the library by 20% (to a maximum of 70%). We ask entrants to consider the programs appropriate for a contemporary library in this context, and incorporate into their design only those programs they deem fitting and necessary. We ask entrants to be cognizant of budget limitations, and propose designs that use spatial resources intelligently. The proposed program in the brief is the maximum, and we hope that the designs we receive will be selective.

7. NORTH ORIENTATION: The North direction on the competition is off.

Yes, you are right. The North direction in the competition brief is incorrect. It does not match google orientation. Please follow google maps.

minimum of one person and / or a legal entity which are in

legal capacity to practice architecture in their country of registration should be part of the


8. SUBMISSION Do we send submission online or by courier? What format? When is the deadline?

Submissions should be sent by May 30th, both online and by post. It is ok if the submission arrives after May 30th, as long as it is sent by May 30th. Online submissions should be sent via WeTransfer. Physical submissions should be sent as A0 Panel Boards (not sheets), to the following address:

Abdulrahman Al Sudairy Cultural Centre

Riyadh 11614
P.O. Box 94781
Tel: 011 201 5949
Fax: 011 201 5498 Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Competition Brief 


Competition Registration

Competition Material

3D Model