King Abdullah University for Science and Technology (KAUST)

Jeddah, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia

Located 80 km north of Jeddah on Saudi Arabia’s beautiful Red Sea coast, King Abdullah University of Science and Technology (KAUST) was conceived as a ‘house of wisdom’, with a vision to become one of the world’s great institutions for education and research.

The first masterplan for KAUST was completed in 2007, with initial phases of the campus built and occupied by 2010 – becoming the largest LEED Platinum accredited facility in the world. As the university continued to grow, it appointed a team of international consultants to review and update this masterplan to ensure further development was both coherent and consistent with the original goals and vision.


Buro Happold was commissioned to provide a comprehensive suite of engineering and technical consultancy services to review the masterplan. This was a significant task, requiring our team to examine the full implications of future growth across education, leisure, health and transport provision, as well as futureproofing the campus against the impact of external pressures such as climate change.

Conceived as a ‘house of wisdom.’ Image: Buro Happold


The sustainably framework we designed ensured planned development was aligned with the university’s strong environmental aspects, and we also offered a number of other solutions such as geothermal and solar energy generation.

Concurrently working on the masterplan for the King Abdullah Economic City, adjacent to KAUST, allowed us to integrate a KAUST metro stop on the planned new transit link, which will complement the university’s bus service to provide an integrated and seamless transport network for the students and staff.

KAUST is LEED Platinum accredited. Image: Buro Happold


Our work on the masterplan update for this prestigious project has helped the university to ensure that its facilities and infrastructure meet the predicted, ambitious growth of the university and its planned research park through to 2022.

campus design, sustainable campus, sustainable university, best university campus
integrated and seamless transport network for the students and staff. Image: Buro Happold

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