Mubarak al-Hassawi
Medical Institute

Sharjah, UAE

The masterplanning for a 40ha medical centre in the Gulf Emirate of Sharjah. The introduction of a valley landscape creates a varied setting and connective hub for the hospitals and therapy units. Planting is zoned according to their water requirements with indigenous trees and a natural dry plateau landscape (jol), creating a unifying framework across the site.


The site design engages with the culture and ecology of the region, modifying the micro-climate with extensive shade gardens and natural cooling by the use of tree planting. Water, in the form of thin jet fountains and running water rills, is used in all areas to aid ambient atmosphere and temperature.


In addition, there are four courtyard gardens to accompany the buildings. Following the form of the traditional Islamic garden, the charbagh or ‘fourfold garden’ is used to underpin the design and provide quiet and reflective spaces to aid recovery and recuperation. Extensive use is made of geometric paving and moving water. Shade is created using palm trees and hedging.



  • Arid landscape – zoned planting according to water requirements
  • Naturally shaded routes, tree lined
  • Use of courtyard / roof gardens for therapy and rehabilitation, recovery and recuperation
  • Children’s & intensive care, spa, herb garden, culinary



  • Arid & ecological  landscape
  • Indigenous planting  


Client: MAHBI

Architect: Syntax and NBBJ

Coe Design