Makkah successfully reduces heat in pedestrian pathways at holy sites

Thursday, July 25, 2019

RIYADH: The Secretariat of the Holy Capital has implemented a project to apply a heat-blocking coating to pavement surfaces in pedestrian pathways at holy sites.  

The first phase of the project included coating the pedestrian pathway in Mina all the way to the Jamarat facilities, a total area of about 3,500 square meters.

The director general of the holy sites and seasons, Ahmed Manshi, pointed out that the project is being implemented in cooperation with the Japanese corporation Sumitomo.

“The project aims to reduce the temperature of the pavement surface in Shaiben area, and there is a possibility to include the Jamarat facilities, and coat several pedestrian pathways at holy sites,” he said.

Manshi added that the project will help reduce the temperature by 15-20 degrees celsius, highlighting that the temperature will be recorded every 10 seconds during the season using sensors installed under the asphalt.

He explained that to measure the success of this project, surveys will be distributed to pilgrims during this year’s Hajj season.

“We have also coordinated with the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Institute for Hajj and Umrah Research to conduct a study on this experiment, recommend the possibility of expanding to other locations, and learn the most convenient sites for the secretariat to provide the service,” he said.

The project came after the completion of a network of pedestrian pathways extending from the Mount of Mercy (Jabal Al-Rahma) in Arafat to Mina, passing through Muzdalifah.

It aims to ensure the comfort, safety and security of pilgrims while they move between holy sites. The pathway has been paved using interlocking tiles, and benches are placed on both sides for pilgrims to rest.

Sunshades have also been installed to protect pilgrims from the sun, and concrete barriers have been placed to prevent vehicles from entering the pedestrian pathway. The pathway is lit using high-tech poles and LED beams, which are bright, cost-efficient when compared to ordinary lighting, and have low emissions.