AL-ZAHRA MULTI-SERVICE NEIGHBORHOOD CENTER
A DESIGN CONCEPT FOR THE SAUDI ARABIAN
Khalid Saad al-Nassar
A Thesis Submitted to the Faculty of the
SCHOOL OF NATURAL RENEWABLE RESOURCES
In Partial Fulfillment of the Requirements
For the Degree of
MASTER OF LANDSCAPE ARCHITECTURE
In the Graduate College
THE UNIVERSITY OF ARIZONA .
1 9 7 9
STATEMENT BY AUTHOR
This thesis has been submitted in partial ful
fillment of requirements for an advanced degree at The
University of Arizona and is deposited in the University
Library to be made available to borrowers under rules of
Brief quotations from this thesis are allowable
without special permission, provided that accurate
acknowledgment of source is m a d e . Requests for permis
sion for extended quotation from or reproduction of this
manuscript in whole or in part may be granted by the head
of the major department or the Dean of the Graduate
College when in his judgment the proposed use of the
material is in the interests of scholarship.
other instances, however, permission must be obtained
from the author.
APPROVAL BY THESIS DIRECTOR
This thesis has been approved on the date shown below:
MICHAEL M. MCCARTHY
Assistant Professor of
Dedicated to my parents.
The talents and efforts of many people have gone
into the planning and conduct of this thesis.
like to acknowledge here'my great debt to these people.
Without their constant and unequivocal support and guid
ance, it. is doubtful that the enterprise would even have
The author wishes to express his gratitude and
appreciation to the major thesis advisor. Professor
McCarthy, Dr.. Robert Bechtel and Professor William Havens.
Sincere appreciation is given to the Saudi Arabian Edu
cational Mission in Houston, Texas for their support and
letters of recommendation,
In.Saudi Arabia, special thanks should be extended
to the General Presidency of Youth Welfare, the Munici
pality of the City of Riyadh, the General Department of
Statistics,, the Office of Town Planning in Riyadh and to
the Ministry of the Interior for their encouragement and
letters of recommendation.
Deep obligations are due to all the residents of
al-Zahra neighborhood who participated in the study and
who made this project possible.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Page ix LIST OF TABLES . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . xiv
. . . . . . . . . . 1
Geo-historic a.nd Cultural Background of Saudi Arabia . . . . . . . . . .
Dominant Cultural Concerns ...........
Religion . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Social Activities .
Public Service and"Work Camps .
. . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Geo-historic and Cultural Background of Riyadh
Population Growth of Riyadh . . . . . .
Familialism t . . ...............
Sexual Modesty . . . . . . . . . .
Education . . . . . . . . . . . .
Area and Population of Saudi Arabia .
Major Population Centers ........
Nomadic Settlement and Migration .
Service and Recreational Programs and
Facilities at the National Level . .
Cultural Affairs . . . . . . . . .
Social Affairs . . . . . . . . . .
Medical Services . . . . . . .
Postal Services . . . . . . . . . 31
TABLE OF CONTENTS— Continued
Spatial Arrangement of Riyadh . ‘. . =
Service and Recreational Programs and
Facilities at the City Level . . . .
Social Development .
Community S e r v i c e s .
Recreation and Green Space . . . .
The Concept of Public Space . . .
Land Acquisition . . . . . . . . .
3 . REVIEW OF LITERATURE . ................. 70 i
Multi-Service Neighborhood Centers
(MSNC) . . . , . . . . .
Policy for the M S N C .............
Services for the MSNC . . . . . .
Recreation . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Benefits and Contributions of
Recreation . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Recreation Activities . . . . . . . .
Children's Playgrounds . . . . . .
Philosophy and Trends . . . . . .
Folk Dancing . . . . . . . . . . . .
Hobbles . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Research in Recreation . . . . . . . . .
Traditional Approach ...........
The Innovative Approach .
An Experimental Planning Approach.
Classification . . . . . .
D r a m a ........ .. ................. 10 4
Music ■ . .
. . . .
Gardening . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1 0 6
Functions of Models . . . . . . .
4. -THE RESEARCH PROBLEM . . . . . . . . . . . l4l
Physical and Social Setting of al-
Zahra Neighborhood . .
TABLE OF CONTENTS--Continued
Limitation of the Study . . . . . .
Research Questions . . . . . . . . . .
Research Design . . . . . . . . . . .
Questionnaire Development . .
Approaching the Residents with the
Concept of MSNC . . . . . . . . .
Pilot Study . . . . . . . . . . .
Ranking . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . , . . .
Further Development of the Ques tionnaire in Saudi Arabia .
Letters of Recommendation . . . .
Selection of Sample .
Data Collection . . . . . . . . . , .
Treatment of Data . . . . . . . . . / .
I k 5
5. RESULTS AND FINDINGS . . . . . . . . . . . .
Population Characteristics ........... 158
Question 1, Need for MSNC . . . . 161'
Question 2, Leisure . .
Question Recreational Activities
Summary of Question 3 . . . . . 204
Question, .53 Administration . . . . . 206
Question .6, Separation of Sexes .
Question 7, Children's Playgrounds. 209
Question 8, Services .
Question, 91 Time of Operation
Summary of Findings
Conclusion . . . . .
. ... . .
. . 219
6. RECOMMENDATIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR
FURTHER RESEARCH . . . . . .
Recommendations . ................. 227
Planning Program .......... 229
Need for Services and Recreational
. . . .
Survey of Existing Activities and
TABLE OF CONTENTS— -Continued
List of Activities and Facilities.
Financial Support . . . . . . . .
Physical' Design . . . . . . . . . .
Management . . . . . . . . . . . . .
. . . . . . 247
Suggestions for Future Research . . . 250
Concluding Statement . . . . 250.
APPENDIX A: SUMMARY OF THE SELF-EXPRESSION THEORY. 251
APPENDIX R: QUESTIONNAIRE . . . . .
. . . .
APPENDIX C: LETTERS OF RECOMMENDATION- . . . . . . . 267
LIST OF TABLES
1. Population of Saudi Arabia . .
'. . .
2. Population of Saudi Arabian cities . . . .
3. Estimated population of Riyadh . . . . . .
4. SCET international population estimate of
Riyadh 1974 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
5. Recent projections of informed sources until 1980 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
6. Distribution of respondents by character istics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
7. How leisure time is spent according to total population of 203
8. Popular and less popular leisure time
Leisure time spent playing with the
Children according' to respondents who have children under 12 years of age . . .
10. Respondents interested in practicing sports activities according to occupation.
11. Respondents interested in practicing
12.- Respondents interested in watching sports activities according to occupation . . . .
13. Respondents interested in watching sports activities according to sex . . . . . . .
Popular and less popular sports among the
82.2 percent or 167 respondents who chose to practice sports activities ........ ix
•LIST OF TABLES— Continued
Activities popularity according to sex
from the total respondents who chose to
practice sports (82.2 percent or 167 re spondents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
16. Respondents interested in reciting litera-
17- Respondents interested in reciting literature according to sex . . . . . . . 179
Respondents interested in listening to
lectures and participating in symposiums
according to occupation . . .
1 9 .
Respondents interested in listening to
lectures and participating in symposiums,
according to sex . . .
. . ... . .
20. Respondents interested in writing literature according to occupation . . . . 183
Respondents interested in writing literature according to sex . . . . . . . . 184
■ Respondents interested in practicing art
■ Respondents interested in practicing artwork according to sex . . . . . . . . . 186
24. Respondents interested in visiting.art
shows according to occupation .
25. Respondents interested in visiting art shows according to sex ... .
. . . . . 188
26. Popular and less popular fine art activi
ties among respondents who- are interested
in practicing art work (53.7 percent or
27. Art activities according to. sex among re spondents who are interested in practicing
LIST OF TABLES— Continued xi
Respondents,interested In practicing
Respondents interested in practicing
theatrical arts according to s e x ........ 192
30. Respondents interested in watching theatrical arts to occupation .
31. Respondents interested in watching theatrical arts sex . . . . .
32. Theatrical arts among respon
dents who are interested in practicing
theatrical art activities. (60.6 percent or 123 respondents from t o tal.population . .
Popular and less popular theatrical arts
activities among respondents who are
interested in theatrical arts activities
( S O . 6
percent or 123 respondents from
total population) .
. . . . . . . . . . 195.
34. Respondents interested in watching movie shows according to o c c u p a t i o n .... 197
'35. Respondents interested in watching movie shows according to sex ........... .
I9 8 .
hobbies according to occupation .
... . 199
37.. Respondents interested in scientific hobbies according to sex . -... . .. .. » ... . 200
Respondents interested in fun and thinking
games according to occupation .. ... .
3 9 .
Respondents interested in fun and thinking
•40. Fun and thinking games activities accord
ing to sex among respondents who are
interested in fun and thinking games (72.9
percent or 148 respondents from total
LIST OF TABLES— -Continued
4 1 . Popular and less popular fun and think ing games among respondents who are
(72-9 percent or 1.48 respondents) .
42. Hierarchy of activities' according, to time:.
205 population . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
44. Administration o.f the. center according to
45. Possibility of establishing one or
separate center(s ) for males and females
according to total, population .
. . . . .
46. Associating children's playgrounds with men and women according to total popula tion . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Associating children's playgrounds with
men and women according to those who have ■
children under 12 years and those with
children over 12 years or no children at
48. Service facilities for the MSNC according to total population .
. . .
.49. Days of the week and time of day center would be used the most » .
. . .
50. Frequency of suggestions regarding recrea
51. Frequency of suggestions regarding com-, munity services . . . . . . . . . . . . .
52. Frequency of suggestions regarding forming
53- Frequency of suggestions that do not fall under previous categories , .
LIST OF TABLES— Continued
5#.- Activities for al-Zahra MSNC according to sex and priorities . . . . . . . . . . . . .
55 - dimensions of facilities .
LIST OF ILLUSTRATIONS
1. Map of the city of Riyadh showing al~
Zahra n e i g h b o r h o o d ............. ~ . In Pocket
2. Map of Saudi Arabia . . . . . . . . . . . 20
50 3. Evolution .of Riyadh . . . . . . . . . . . .
4. Diagrammatic concept of a traditional
Arabian Suq ^ •
5. Leisure subsistence to post-industrial societies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
6. Hierarchy of planning models for Saudi
7 Relationships between planning models for
Saudi Arabia . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
8. Supply and demand for neighborhood facili ties in Saudi Arabia ...............
.9• Program for planning and designing a M S N C .
10. Two separate centers connected with a park system ........ .. .
11. Diagrammatic functional relationships .
12. Spatial relationships . . . . . . . . . . .
A .study was conducted in al-Zahra neighborhood3
termine the reaction of the residents towards a new
concept of establishing a multi-service neighborhood
center, utilizing the concept of advocacy planning.
study was meant to set precedent for establishing such
centers to serve the residents of all the neighborhoods
of the Saudi Arabian cities.
The residents of al-Zahra
neighborhood expressed the desire to establish two
one for women.
.One- of the most significant events in Saudi
Arabia in the past three decades has been the discovery
of o i l .
Prior to this discovery, the country w a s , for
the most p a r t , a typical folk society with a minimal
division of labor and a sacred value orientation.
the discovery of oil, the country entered a new era o f
its economic and social development (El-Banyan 1974,
One of the most important characteristics of this
development has been the movement toward large-scale
urbanization in the form of expanding and modernizing
old cities and the establishment of new towns and urban
settlements in the. various regions of the country.
This urbanization process- is being accompanied by
the introduction of new values and modes of life and by
the arousal of. new needs.
These needs have to be met in.
order to make urban life a quality characteristic of any
healthy, vital and creative urban system that caters to
the well-being, inspiration and happiness of its citizens.
The trend of the Saudi Arabian government and the
Arabian people is towards achieving an urban system in
response to Arabian culture and Islamic tradition and
Including the inspiration that has come from other
In an effort to speed the pace of technological
modernizationj the Saudi Arabian government began to open
its doors to outside influences.
Most of the development
has occurred.in the technological fields because of the
increased demand for technical skills and knowledge.
The social; and cultural aspects of development still re main to be emphasized.
In a recent meeting called by the
Foreign Student Advisor at The University of Arizona
between faculty members who have participated in projects
for Saudi Arabia,, and the Saudi Arabian students on campus ,
Dr. Harry Snyder,, a long-time associate and advisor for
the Saudi Arabian government, pointed out that the educa
tional trend in Saudi Arabia must lean towards the social
sciences to accompany their technological objectives in
light of. its historical and cultural values and tradi tions .
An understanding of the Saudi Arabian's cultural
values and religious traditions and beliefs is the measure
for the success of their material development.
The fast development of the urban centers of
Saudi Arabia has a great impact on the,quality of social,
life in cities and t o wns.
It has always been essential
for cities to be considered urban in character and quality
to include certain recreational and service facilities
that reflect the degree of interaction between the
society and the environment that contains it.-- Urbanism
at its present scale is a new phenomena in Saudi Arabia.
However, as urbanites, the Arabs have long established
great cities, such as Cairo, Damascus, Baghdad, etc.,
with essential governmental, medical, recreational
institutes and facilities.
The cities of Saudi Arabia are just emerging into
the 20th century reality.
They are growing- rapidly, with
emphasis on utilities such as transportation, electricity
and w a t e r .
Medical, postal and governmental services are
centralized, while cities are expanding— t h u s , creating
insufficient services that are not easily reached.
Recreational facilities at community levels are prac tically non-existent.
The need for decentralized
recreational and service facilities is impressive as the
society transforms toward a different and new lifestyle.
The new lifestyle stems from the wealth of the country,
increase in population, and the effort by the government
for rapid mass education and the' awareness of the average
Saudi citizen of other societies.
In order for Saudi Arabia to avoid the urban plights that other 'societies have experienced, such as
pollution, congestion, crimes, and juvenile delinquency,
it is necessary to adopt wise and innovative planning
concepts and techniques to guide the citizens towards
establishing an urban environment that is healthy, safe,
beautiful and enjoyable.
It would be beneficial to develop a model for the cities of Saudi Arabia that would point out urban issues o f concern and how to deal with them.
model of such great magnitude would be impractical if
each single situation is not dealt with separately in
Practically, in all of the Saudi Arabian neigh
borhoods, there is a lack of recreational and service
A concept of these facilities for present
hood, to serve as a model for other neighborhoods, each
according to their needs.
In the city of Riyadh, the neighborhood of al-
Zahra is the subject of this study.
The city is
sectioned into different neighborhoods, with varied
income levels, area coverage and density (see map.
Figure 1, in pocket). A concept of establishing a multi
service center for the neighborhood, will be tested to
determine the recreation and service needs, involving
the residents in the decision-making process.
My objectives in this study is to provide an
example of arriving at a cohesive design that takes
advocacy planning as the starting point to involve people
in. designing their e n v i r o n m e n t a n d to show that this is
a feasible planning method in Saudi Arabian society.
The potential for advocacy planning in Saudi
Arabia is wide o p e n .
The Saudi citizens have been
accustomed to the government providing them with infra
structure , however, provision of the social.overhead in
the forms of social services and recreational facilities
at the neighborhood level 'could not be achieved by
governmental assessments only.
The people for whom these
services and facilities to be provided should have the
first s a y .
There are many planning and design issues that
cannot be resolved by mere intuition, observation or the
whims of the designer's, fancy, such as mixing of the
sexes, or people's preferences and actual needs for
services and facilities.
The concept of advocacy planning
could resolve these issues with factual information from
the people themselves.
The outcome of this study showed that this con- -
eept is feasible for the segment of the society that
participated in the study and its. potential to involve
the rest of the Saudi society is encouraging, especially
that the governmental officials have welcomed the testing
of the concept, If testing of the concept utilizing a -
survey technique of questionnaires proved successful in
al-Zahra neighborhood, other techniques such as personal
interviews rtiight prove helpful in other neighborhoods of
less educated residents.
The concept of advocacy planning in this study has
led to diagrammatic design solutions for establishing a
multi-service neighborhood center that caters to the
needs of al-Zahra neighborhood.
However, the purpose of
this study is to provide a stepping stone towards
utilizing the concept in all of the Saudi Arabian neigh borhoods.
Since this study is the first of its kind in Saudi
Arabia-, the research dealt with the broader issues con
cerning the Saudi Arabian society as a w h o l e , then it
discussed the city of Riyadh's growth and spatial arrange
ment zeroing in on the neighborhood of al-Zahra as a case
This method of research is essential for a better
understanding of the circumstances surrounding the Saudi
Arabian society, thus eliminating the misconception that
the multi-service neighborhood center is a western device
that is not fit for the Arabian Islamic culture.
this method eliminates the misconception that present
governmental projects for social services and recrea- '
tional facilities are designed to reach all segments of
This study consists of six chapters.
chapter, the reader is introduced to the study.
2 serves as an introduction to the background of the study
at the national level and at the city of Riyadh level..
Those who are familiar with the Saudi Arabian society and
the governmental programs for social services and recre
ational facilities could skip this chapter and proceed
with the following ones.
Chapter 3 is the review of
literature in recreation research which led to adopting
the approach for this study.
It is meant to familiarize
the Saudi readier with old and new research methods in the
The concept advocacy planning was
discussed here. This chapter also pointed out some im
portant and potential social services and recreation
activities and facilities a multi-service neighborhood
center could provide.
Chapters 4 and 5 .are devoted entirely to the
methodology and gathering and analyzing of data concern ing the survey which was conducted in al-Zahra
Chapter 6 concludes this study with recoin
mendations that led to a program for planning and dia grammatic design solutions for establishing a multi service neighborhood center.
Suggestions for further
BACKGROUND OF THE STUDY
This chapter points out growth, development and
new trends in Saudi Arabia and in the city of Riyadh as
they relate to social services and the provision of
This chapter is presented in
two sections: the first section deals with some important
aspects of the geo-historic and cultural background of
Saudi Arabia and the second section deals with the geo-
historic and cultural background of Riyadh.
Geo-historic and Cultural Background of
The human being is a social animal.
graduated from gathering foods and hunting to agriculture,
societies progressed from nomadism, to settlement.
early societies, these settlements were
grew in number, and due to the gradual increase in human
population and therefore interaction, settlements began
to take various forms, functions, and locations. Settle ments were built around military garrisons > along trade
routes, In fertile regions or around, sacred religious
A question poses itself on geographers, planners
and spatial historians : When and how did settlements
transform themselves to urban centers? Sjoberg (1973,
p. 25) stated that, "The first cities arose some.5,500
years ago- large-scale urbanization began only 100 years
The intervening steps in the evolution of cities
were nonetheless a prerequisite for modern urban socie ties."
According to Sjoberg, there has been three major
levels of human organization.. The "folk society" is pre-
urban and even pre-literate.
It consists of self-
sufficient homogeneous small numbers of people, with their
energies almost wholly absorbed by the quest for food.
The folk, society permits few distinctions of class or
specialization of labor.
Some folk societies still exist
However, similar human groups began the slow
process of evolving into more complex societies milleniurns
ago through advances in technology and organizational
The second level of organization is the civilized
pre-industrial or "feudal", society.
Because of the
selective cultivation of grains and often the practice of
animal husbandry, there is a surplus of food.
surplus provided time and energy for specialization of
labor and the kind of class structure necessary for
leadership and command over manpower to develop and main
tain extensive irrigation systems as well as metallurgy
Even though literacy is usually confined to
a leisured elite, writing, for keeping accounts, the
recording of historical accounts, law, literature and
religious beliefs were characteristics of this level of
Even though pre-industrial cities still
survive, the modern industrial city is categorized as
characterized by mass literacy, a fluid class system, and
most important, the technological breakthrough in ;
maintaining new sources of inanimate energy that produced
and still sustain the industrial revolution.
against the background of this three-tiered structure,
the first emergence of cities at the level of civilized"
pre-industrial society can be more easily understood"
(Sjoberg 19733 p. 26).
Since most Saudi Arabian cities are just emerging
to the 20th century civilization, they by and large fall ' under the category of the pre-industrial organization.
The traditional pre-industrial society required an
apparatus to organize the labor force needed for large-
scale construction, such as public buildings, city walls
and irrigation systems. A social organization of this
kind.requires’a variety of full-time specialists, directed
by a ruling elite.
The ruling elite, although few in
number, must command sufficient political power— reinforced by an ideology, usually religious in character.
Regardless of what level of organization a
society is experiencing, it is always defined by culture.
Culture never ceases to exist; it changes, develops and
Burch (1970, p. 6.1) describes culture in terms
that "Culture specifies for the members of a social group
what is, what ought to be, and how one gets there.
culture is a distinctive language which shapes the per ceptions and behavior of its. members."
Within the larger culture exemplified by a : : society, the group structure persists.
The group is
It is inherently conservative and usually
quo.. Different groups have different goals which might
lead to conflict of purposes.
The results of not harmon^
izing diverse actions is a mixture of good and bad,
wisdom and foolishness, belief and incredulity, conserva
tive and radical, social and antisocial, and progressive
Human beings are born into groups in the society,
whether it is familial, religious or political units from
town to nation.
They join a group or several groups
according to how they make a living, what they believe
in or enjoy.
They find advantage in this collectivism.
They comply for common purposes, and comply for common
It is beyond the scope of this study to discuss
Arabian culture and value system; however, it is necessary
to point out some major cultural concerns and trends in
Saudi Arabia. The Arabian society with its rich back
ground and heritage will contribute the basis for
providing cultural centers that reflects its past and
project its future goals of modernization and development.
Dominant Cultural, Concerns
Designing a multi-service neighborhood center in
volves, before anything, the people for whom it is
It is important to understand the major aspects
of their culture in light of historic developments of
their beliefs and way of life.
The Arab world has had a
complement of dominant concerns, such as religion, tradi tionalism, familialism, and sexual modesty.
The word Islam has several different m eanings.
it connotes the one true divine religion, taught
to mankind by a series of prophets, each of whom
brought a revealed b o o k .
Such were the T o r a h ,
the Psalms and the Gospels brought by the
Prophets Moses, David and J e s u s .
was the last and greatest of the prophets
and the book he brought, the Qur'an, com
pletes and supersedes all previous revelations
(Lewis 19765 p. 25).
The word Islam is commonly understood to mean
surrender of the believer to God.
Islam centers itself
on the concept of the Oneness of God.
A true believer is
the one who gave himself entirely to God alone to the
exclusion of others, i.e., a monotheist as contrasted
with a polytheist.
In the first stages of Islam, the
Prophet appeared among many polytheistical A r a b s .
was perceived by the Prophet and his .followers as a con tinuation of the previous monotheistic religions.
its doctrine, Islam stems from, the culture that nurtured
it and its ethics.
Islam is also viewed, as a reform of
past Arabian, c u l t u r e i t prohibited many pre-Islamie
practices, but it strengthened and enhanced others.
Islam has come to be the center of the Arabian culture.
The normative function of religion is manifested
in the extent to which it regulates everyday
behavior positive and negative commandments,
all of which, ideally, must be observed (Patai
1973 3 P. 143).
In Saudi Arabia religion is not only one aspect
of life,.but the center from which all else radiates.
Nearly all custom and tradition is religious in nature.
Religious do's and don't's extend throughout all
15 activity, thought and feeling.
Religion was and 'still is
for the majority the central normative force in life.
The constitution of Saudi Arabia is based, on the
Holy Quran and the Sunna (tradition of the Prophet).
Saudi Arabian citizens are Muslims with the vast majority
belonging to the Sunni sect, and a minority of Shi'ite
Muslims along the east coast of Arabia.
Arab culture and Middle Eastern culture in general
are part of eastern cultures, yet of all eastern
cultur'es they are the closest to the West both .
historically and geographically.
thinkers have in recent decades emphasized the
affinity of the Arab world with the West rather
than with the great Asiatic cultures that lies
to the east of Arabia.
Yet there can be' no doubt
that the two cultures, that of the West and that
of the Arab world, are characterized by widely
A rab, and generally Middle
Eastern Muslims, culture is closely related to
■the East, to the cultures of South, Southeast,
and East Asia (Northrop 1974, p. 313) •
The slow change in the social and cultural life of the
Arab world is due- to the development of Arab tradi tionalism around the revealed religion.
In Arab culture
it is considered that the age in which the revelation
of Islam took place, in the seventh century A.D., was
the greatest and hoblest period in its history.
If -a society believes that its religion was re
vealed by God at a certain time in the past to
its greatest religious leader, it cannot help
developing a.mentality which considers adherence
to religious tradition as a supreme value, and.
by extension* must come to regard all tradition
Influences from outside Arab traditionalism must
possess apparent advantages to be accepted with little
or no opposition.
A l s o 3 it must lie well outside the
mainstream of Arab culture.
Technological features which
do not threaten any of the traditionally embedded values
are the most readily accepted.
There is a widespread
appreciation and interest in Western technology, but not
Fatal (1973,. p • 282) defined famllialism as "the
centrality of the family in social organization* its
primacy in the loyalty scale, and its supremacy over
He characterized the Arab family by
six features: it is extended, patriarchlal, patrilineal,
patrilocal, endogenous, and occasionally, polygymous
A family with such traits reign central in both social
and individual l i f e .
There is a special kind o.f honor connected with
one's sexual conduct. The honor-shame syndrome is re
flected in the language by the words "sharaf" and "ird."
Honor in its non-sexual, general connotation is termed
"sharaf„" Sharaf is something flexible; it can be acquired, diminished, augmented,, lost or regained, depending on one's behavior. Ird is a rigid concept; it is a specific kind of honor mainly connected with women, and depends on their proper conduct. "It has a sexual connotation. A sexual offense on her part causes her to lose her ird, which will bring shame.not only to her, but to her family as well.
The Arab sensitivity to the ird is so great that
an entire way of life has: been built around it,
aiming at the prevention of the occurrence of a
situation which might lead to a woman's loss of
her sexual virtue, or which might enable a man
Measures to protect the women's chastity take different
restrictive forms such as veiling and seclusion of women,
school segregation based on sex, and the recent partici
pation of women in the work force in only the traditional
roles of teachers or nurses.
Al-Khedalre (1978, p. 18) quotes Tibawi in stating
that education for both sexes was encouraged by Islam
as the prophet Mohammad says, "Quest for learning is a
duty incumbent upon every Moslem male and female."
Before the discovery of oil, there was neither
large-scale demand for general education nor the financial
means to provide it. Formal education in Saudi Arabia
was entirely according to the Islamic tradition of re-
ligious and classical learning and was available only to
a tiny segment of the country's y o u t h .
In 1926 the
government established a Directorate General of Education.'
At the present time, the amount of educated people in
Saudi Arabia is increasing steadily. In 1961-1962,
130,000 boys and 11,914 girls were enrolled in elementary
schools throughout the kingdom.
In 1974-1975, these
figures jumped to 411,194 for boys and 223,304 for girls.
At the intermediate level (junior high) of education in
1964-1965, the enrollment was 18,374 boys and 1,154
These figures jumped to 70,548 boys and 20,518
girls in 1972-1973 •
In 1964-1965 the enrollment in
secondary schools (high schools) was- 4,536 boys and 52
girls. This level of education was increased to 31,333 • boys and 10,206 girls in 1974-1975•
Higher education at
the university level was 6,508 males and 434 females in
1969- 1 9 7 0 .
These figures increased to 16,171 boys and
2,922 girls in.1974-1975.
Adult education and literacy
programs are increasing at a full scale.
Adult education is offered at the intermediate
and secondary levels.
In 1971-1972, the total number
of adult students was 6,588 and in 1975, this figure
jumped to 99>673 students with a projection of 520,000
pupils in 3> 327 schools in 1980 .
The Ministry of
Education utilized day school facilities and personnel
to offer night programs (Al-Khedaire 1978).
Increase in education Indicates that the trends
in Saudi Arabia today stress achievement rather than
ascription, the type of occupation has been by and large
determined by the level of education.
expands the individual's awareness to other aspects of
living beyond traditional roles . -
Area and Population of Saudi Arabia
The Arabian Peninsula is a large territory in
area exceeding one million square miles, roughly equiva
lent to the United States east of the Mississippi (Figure
Saudi Arabia occupies the bulk of the Arabian
Peninsula, about 873,000 square miles (The World Almanac
and Book of Facts 1977, p. 602).
Different sources have
given different population estimates for Saudi Arabia
An estimate of about 7,012,000 is found in
the Statistical Indicator (Ministry of Finance and
National. Economy 1976, p. I l l ; hereinafter referred to
as M F N E ).
Saudi Arabia is divided into several geographical
First, the Nafud Desert, extends from the
J R A Q
Map of Saudi Arabia. — Taken from al—
Khedaire (1978, p. 12).
Table 1. Population of Saudi Arabia.
The World Almanac and Book of
Facts 1977, p. 602
Ministry of Finance and National
Economy (M F N E ) 1976, p. Ill
This desert is characterized by huge sand dunes as the
name Nafud (dune) implies.
Second, to the southeast, the
hostile Rub al-Khali (empty quarter) floats upon a sea of
Third, the eastern or coastal region is lowest in
elevation and has one of the largest oases in Arabia,
al-Hasa is also known for its natural
Fourth, Nejd is t h e .central plateau
This area has a dry climate and contains several
Pith, al-Hejaz (barrier) mountains rise to create
a separate coastal region situated on the Red Sea.
Major Population Centers
HejaZj or the Western Province, mainly consists
(the city of Prophet Mohammed), and Jedda, which is the
22 major sea and air p o r t .
The rest of the population of
this region live in small villages and towns scattered
along the coast and in the m o u n t a i n s P o p u l a t i o n s of
major Saudi Arabian cities are listed in Table 2.
In the central region of Saudi Arabia (Nejd) is
located the capital, Riy a d h .
Riyadh is the spine of life
supporting numerous small towns and. villages around it.
several major cities: Dhaharan, Dammam, al-Khobar, and
the oasis of al-Qatif.
A l s o , several settlements around
the oil fields such as Abqaq and Ras Tanura which has
the largest oil refinery in Saudi Arabia.
population center for the southern province of Saudi
Arabia is Abha.
Through the ages many civilizations have four-
ished in the Arabian Peninsula.
Those empires conquered
the neighboring empires and in turn were conquered by
them--thus giving the peninsula a heterogeneous character.
As a basis for analyzing the subtle, but obvious, sub-
grouping of the Saudi Arabian society, the major factor
in creating this phenomena is Islam, and the second is
tradition, which extends its roots from the ancient Arab
tribes of the peninsula.
Table 2. Population of Saudi Arabian cities.
CBS News Almanac
(1978, p. 482)
The World Almanac and
Book of Pacts (1977, p. 572)
1973 500,000 250,000 100,000 450,000 100,000
1973 500,000 ' 225,000
Islam Invited many non-Arab.as well as Arab Muslim
groups to concentrate in and around the sacred cities of
Mecca and Medina.
Establishment of groups and communities
from Turkey, India, Persia, Indonesia, Bokhara (in the
Soviet Union), Afghanistan and some parts of Africa as
well as from other Arab countries, gave the area a unique
character of Islamic unity and Arab brotherhood with the
natives of the region.
This acculturation process gained
its strongest momentum in the Western Province.
The Eastern Province has experienced an accultura tion process of its own unique character by being influ
enced not only by Islam., but also by waves of ancient and
modern civilizations which established their trade posts
as connectors oh the trade route between the east and the
west along the calm shores of the Arabian Gulf.
island of Bahrain, approximately 20 miles off the shores
of Saudi Arabia, extends its history to time immemorial,
and has long established itself as one of the world's
oldest trade and cultural centers.
It was known to the
Greeks as Dilmun and is a dreamland for archaeologists.
The island of Faylakah off the shores of Kuwait is an
archaeological museum illustrating many episodes of the
story of the eastern coasts of Arabia,
The oases of a 1-Hasa and al-Qatif were famous
trade and agricultural centers since ancient t i mes.
Its. people belong to the Shl'lte sect of Islam.
Phoenicians sailed from the shores of Lebanon to build
the city of Jubail on the shores of the Arabian Gulf.
This trade post of the Phoenicians is becoming one of
Saudi Arabia's most prosperous industrial centers.
The central part of Saudi Arabia did not experi
ence the acculturation process until recent times under
the Saudi r u l e , which established the throne of their ' kingdom in the city of Riyadh.
Through the ages this
area of Arabia remained the same with its tribal doctrines
and Islam as the orthodox constitution which governs their
Being surrounded by a sea of desert from the
north, east, and south and the Hejaz mountains to the west
made it possible for this area to remain homogeneous in
character, giving its people a hardy conservative outlook
on life which is starting to change with modern develop ment .
Nomadic Settlement and Migration.
Most of the nomadic population of Arabia is
scattered in the Nejd plateau and the northern fringes of
The government and the urbanites view
nomadism as a problem hindering the development of the
country towards modernization.
The main concern among
intellectuals and government officials lies in how to
26 program the transition from nomadism to settlement.
Vicker (1975, p . 7) reports that, tribesmen trekking the deserts of Saudi Arabia.
They often are bitterly poor, uneducated and so
lacking in medical care that until quite recently
about half of the Bedouin children died before
the age of five.
The government is spending $27 million in an ex
perimental sheep farm to support a Bedouin settlement
project in the village of Harad some 180 miles inland
from the Arabian Gulf.
"To run the project the Saudis
have brought in 200 technicians, managers and teachers,
many of them from abroad" (Vicker 1975, p .
Bedouins are definitely finding it hard to adjust to a
way of life about which they know nothing.
■being taught to grow alfalfa, barley, corn and oats as
fodder for the sheep and vegetables for their own use.
The issues of nomadic settlement and rural migra
tion to the cities are discussed extensively in a doctoral
dissertation by Dr. S. A. Malik (1973) entitled, "Rural
Migration and Urban Growth in Riyadh,. Saudi Arabia."
Malik (1973, p. 1) states that.
At least thirty percent of the population of Saudi
Arabia were nomads or semi-nomads before the dis covery of oil and the subsequent economic develop ment in the 1940s,
At the present time, the three major cities of Saudi
Arabia— -Mecca, Riyadh, and Jedda— have populations between
150,000 and 300,000* There are.also 12 other cities with populations 20,000 and 100,000. The total population of the country Is roughly between seven and eight million.
Thus, It appears from these figures that Saudi
Arabia Is essentially rural.
More than eighty
percent of Its population lives In localities
of less than 20,000 Inhabitants (Malik 1973, p . 1).
In spite of the fact that Saudi Arabia is mainly
rural, its urban centers are increasing their populations
The population is concentrated in the holy
cities of Mecca and Madina and the seaport of Jiddah, the
headquarters of the government in Riyadh, and in the
coastal oil industrial towns.
The influx from the desert and the rural areas to
Saudi Arabian cities is accelerating as job opportunities
Another reason for the large-scale migration is
the services and amenities the urban lifestyle could pro
vide (see Population Growth of Riyadh in the latter
section of this chapter).
Migration to the cities of; Saudi Arabia has a
dynamic impact on changing the lifestyle of the country.
Malik’s (1973, pv- 53) viewpoint is "that if a migrant
achieves a higher level of education, it will help him
understand different ways of living, and this might free
him from the rigidity inherent in his former closed
society." The degree of integration to the city life
will vary among migrants according to their background.
for an illiterate Bedouin nomad it might take a genera
tion before integration takes p l ace, while for an
educated person from another town the process will be
maintained with much e a s e .
Service and Recreational Programs and
Facilities at the National Level
One of the goals of the national Second Develop ment Plan of Saudi Arabia is t h a t ,
Social services will be developed to ensure
that every group and individual, however dis
advantaged, enjoys adequate, dignified minimum
standard of living; levels above this minimum
will continue to be the reward of individual
effort and achievement (Ministry of Planning
1976, p. 5) .
In the following pages, highlights of the Second
Development Plan, will be presented.
to be discussed are the social and cultural services,
infrastructure such as postal and medical services, and
the activities of the General Presidency of Youth Affairs
regarding recreation and youth development.
:In a growing
country such as Saudi Arabia, the exigency for service
and recreational facilities is creating a national prob lem of inefficient service facilities, and meager recrea tional opportunities.
The Saudi Second Development Plan
realizes this problem, and calls for the provision of
Supporting the concept of continued education,
the Ministry of Education will broaden its programs for
the enrichment of the people of Saudi Arabia.
programs will focus attention on the national library
system, the availability-of museums, the preservation of
national sites and archaeological explorations.
Ministry will establish a biography center, and will open
ten new general libraries, two per year, beginning in
1975-1976, to increase the number of public libraries• from 22 to 32.
During the period of 1976-1979, one large,
five medium, and ten small library buildings will be
constructed as replacement for existing facilities.
Ministry will also initiate the construction of a. nation
al museum, six regional museums to be distributed
throughout the kingdom, and two Islamic museums in Jiddah
Four specialized museums will be located at
such major archaeological sites as Madain Salih.
Social affairs programs include social welfare,
rehabilitation, cooperatives and community development.
Twenty-four additional welfare institutions are planned,
among them.a home for handicapped children and five new
probation h o m e s .
The number of rehabilitation centers
will grow from one in Riyadh to 16 located across the
Generous subsidies will encourage cooperative
developments; 90 new cooperatives are planned.
present number of community development centers will be
doubled and the number and scope of their projects ex panded considerably.
A major program of social research
will be undertaken through the ad-Diryah Center'and its
community development center training programs will be
expanded (Ministry of Planning 1976, p. 95)•
The Second Development Plan mentions that health
services will be developed to the population through a
hierarchy of strategically located health facilities in
each region of the country:
General hospitals of varying sizes, located in urban
communities and offering both preventive and cura tive health services. .
Specialized hospitals, located in the.major cities of
Dispensaries, staffed by physicians and providing
both preventive and curative services, which service
communities of 10,000-15 > 000 (type "A") and 5,000-
10,000 (type "B"), and 40.,000 (district dispensaries).
Health centers providing, under the jurisdiction of
a dispensary, both preventive and curative services,
and serving the smallest communities-.
District dispensaries (polyclinics)., located In major
towns and each providing both preventive and curative
services to a population of 40,000.
Specialized facilities, providing services such as
bilharzia and malaria control, chest disease clinics,
and mother and child health centers.
Support services, including regional laboratories,
equipment and supply warehouses, and engineering
Health offices, responsible for organizing the collec
tion of vital statistics and providing guidance on
preventive health services.
Mobile health services, to cover nomadic and other
persons scattered in small villages.
Health education, prepare,. through the Health Educa
tion Department, literature and visual aids for
dissemination through all general health facilities,
including community development centers, and mother-
and child care clinics; such material will also be
made available for the use of other government
agencies and the private sector (1975-1980) .
Postal facilities recommended by the Second De velopment Plan are as follows.
Construct 'and equip major postal centers at Jiddah,
Riyadh, and Dammam, beginning in 1977-1978 and com pleting by 1979-1980.
Construct and equip 20 main exchange offices in the
larger cities (1976-1977 to 1979-1980).
Construct and equip branch exchange offices in
smaller cities that have villages nearby (such
cities as Munduk, Bishan, and Turabah).
Build smaller exchange offices and refurbish exist
in Riyadh and Jiddah, and 60 offices in other cities
and villages (1975 to 1977).
Incorporate unique color and design features in the
facades of all new and existing postal facilities
to make them easily recognizable by the general
The two principle objectives in the Second De velopment Plan for municipal development a r e :
1. Making cities and villages healthier, more com
fortable, more enj.oyable and less costly places
in which to live, work and travel.
Improve the efficiency of cities3 towns and
villages as the locations for trade, industry
and services .
Concering recreation and service facilities, the
Second Development Plan calls for the designation and
development of public recreation areas in and around major
cities as follows:
Riyadh — 10 square kilometers
Jiddah — 12 square .kilometers
Mecca — 8 square'kilometers
M e d i n a — 4.5 square kilometers
O t h e r s — 34.5 square kilometers
The plan also calls for the construction of cul tural, recreational and civic activities in each munici pality.
The following summary of youth welfare history
and programs is adopted from the Saudi National Second
Development Plan (Ministry of Planning 197-6, pp. 414-421).
In 1973, the department
responsible for youth welfare became a directorate gener al within the Ministry of Labor and Social Affairs..
1974, the General Presidency for Youth Welfare was
to carry out policy design, agency coordination, and
planning functions under the Supreme Council for Youth
During the first plan period, ten youth centers
were to be established, one each in Riyadh, Jiddah,
Dammam, Mecca, Medina, Tayif, Qasim, Qatif, Agha, and ■ al-Hasa.
Parts of the. Riyadh and Dammam centers are
usable, and work has started on the Jiddah center.
In spite of the lack of youth centers, -serious
work has been started to coordinate and expand on a
national basis a wide variety of athletic activities.
Nine national societies have been officially
ball, volleyball, bicycling, handball, table tennis,
swimming, weaponry, and track and field.
Cultural activities within the kingdom include
acting, reading and painting competitions; 774 lectures
and 71 exhibitions have been held at the national, area,
or club level; and knowledge-exchange trips have been
organized for the youth of different are a s .
Youth are being encouraged to invest their energy
and talents in public service at the local*level— for
example, helping to eradicate illiteracy, repairing
mo s q ues,filling in swamps, and fencing land— and
voluntary labor camps at Abha were organized in both
1972-1973 and 1973-1 9 7 4 .
The importance of developing youth leaders has
been recognized in a specific item of the 1974-1975
budget which provides for an Institute for Preparation
of Youth Leaders, linked with the General Presidency in
Objectives and. Policies. Eight general objec tives for youth welfare have been formulated.
achieving these objectives, it will be the policy to
ensure that services are comprehensive, integrated, and
justly distributed, and that the. services are in harmony
both with the Islamic code for rearing youth and modern
knowledge of handling youth.
Contribute to the bringing up of youth in a manner
that balances the moral, mental, physical, health,
psychological, and social aspects of their lives.
Organize the energies and creative capabilities
of youth so that they will contribute positively
to the nation's socioeconomic development.
Support the family structure and strengthen its
ties within the context of youth w elfare.
Spread sporting and recreational activities to
enhance the enjoyment of living.
Encourage young citizens to invest their free
time in activities that improve their physical
fitness, their skills and capabilities, and their
capacity to defend their country.
Raise the standards of excellence in sports and
other activities to international levels.
Develop the leadership needed to promote sports
and recreation activities:
8. Assist the private sector to bear its responsi bility for youth in that sector.
Programs and Projects.
Activities form the
"basic commodity" provided under the Supreme Council for
Youth Welfare via the Directorate General.
activity programs in which children,and youth directly
participatej and the projects planned for 1975-1980, are
Subsequently, the research and other
support programs that are designed to expand and upgrade
the activity programs are described, followed by the
Religion and Language:
Conduct lectures and forums, to expand youth's
general knowledge in these important fields.
seminar,will be held annually in each district, and
two at the national level.
Establish literary competition— -both open and
among the literature groups within clubs— to discover
and encourage early literary talents.
will be held annually in each district and at the
national l e vel.
Hold Souk Ukaz (cultural fair) competitions be
ginning in 1976-1977 and continuing on an annual
b a s i s .
Artistic Fie l d s :
Continue to encourage the artistic hobby groups
within clubs through competitions at the local level.
One contest will be held in each district annually.
Establish an Annual Festival of Acting, Music,
and Folk Arts at the national level to raise the
level of technical performance and encourage young
artists in these fields.
Scientific. Fields : .
For children age nine, and overy establish model
Science Clubs in 1976-1977 (provided that supervisory
leadership can be recruited and studies started
during the first year of the p l a n ) .
Hold competitions among the Science Clubs, and an
annual exhibition.commencing in 1976-1977•
To encourage all cultural activities among
talented youth, conduct "cultural weeks" in different
areas of the kingdom to be recorded and broadcast by the
mass m e d i a .
Eleven such events will be staged during the
As a summit occasion, organize an Islamic World
fourth year of the plan; establish a festival committee,
in the first year:.and send out Invitations to other
Islamic nations in the second year.
Plan construction of club facilities for each of
the 53 existing registered athletic clubs and
construct where possible.
2. Establish and equip "children's gardens" in pub lic parks or other areas where children of pre-
Eleven such gardens will be built commencing in
Organize seven exhibition tours of foreign- teams
to demonstrate hew games in different cities and
regions, commencing in 1975-1976.
Televise athletic competitions among the clubs
and government and private sports groups in the
different regions3 to spread awareness of ath letic activities, commencing in 1975-1976.
. For youth age 12 to 18, develop tests of physical
fitness (1975-1976) and award badges for success fully passing the tests, commencing in 1976-1977•
6. Develop special programs in existing centers for
the training of
young persons in various
sports before the end of the plan.
Presidency will also provide coaching for 240
elected teams covering
different sports and
will organize the appropriate area leagues and
area championships will be held in
the period 1975
1 9 8 0
7. Prepare national teams at the training centers,
with the assistance of advisors in athletic
medicine, physical therapy, and modern training
methods (1975-1980) .
8. Establish specific athletic curricula in certain
intermediate schools for selected students who
are. outstanding in their chosen athletic fields,
with a view to enrolling them in a specialized
institute to be established by the Ministry of
Education in 1976-1977•
Expand this school to
the second level in
1 9 7 8
Organize kingdom-wide contests (138 in tire period
1975-1980), with appropriate championship awards
in football, basketball, volleyball, handball,
table tennis, track and field, bicycling, and
short- and long-distance swimming.
For youth under 18 in different types of schools
or employment, hold a Sporting Festival every two
years, beginning in 1977-1978.
Continue or begin participation in international
contests, such as the Olympic Games, World Cup
Arabian Gulf states, and other selected countries.
The kingdom will participate in 98 such interna tional contests during 1975-1980.
Organize area celebrations of national occasions,
in cooperation with religious and other scholars.
At least one such celebration will take place in
each area annually.
Beginning in 1975-1976 hold at Riyadh an annual
ceremony to honor youth from all parts of the
kingdom who have excelled in sports and other
activities, and have shown leadership qualities.
This project should lead to an annual "Youth Day"
in the kingdom.
3. Organize camp outings of various .
one day to one week or more— for youth of various'
ages, for those who have excelled in particular
activities, for youth from other Islamic coun
tries, and for the board members of the youth
One hundred local camps and one for youth
from Islamic countries will be held during the
p l a n .
4. Organize trips-for Saudi youth to other parts of the kingdom and to other countries; develop
"youth embassy" exchange visits with friendly
countries. Forty-three domestic arid .14 inter national projects are planned.
Public Service and Work Camps
Establish a public service campaign to involve
youth in programs of environmental clean-up,
hygiene, traffic control, alphabetization, and
First Aid/Red Crescent Society programs: 11
programs will be implemented.
2. Expand the program of volunteer labor camps in selected areas for persons age 15-30, to carry
out developmental and other socially useful local
projects; 13 such camps will be held,, beginning
3. For trained youth 18 years and older with previ
ous public' service experience, organize three
work camps designed to accomplish major public
service projects of benefit to the kingdom as a
whole (annually, commencing 1977-1978); in the
fourth year of the plan (1978-1979), organize a.
work camp for youth of the Islamic world.
Several projects within the' research and other
central services of the General Presidency for Youth Wel
fare are planned for the 1975-1980 period, including the
In 1976-1977, undertake a study of the use of
free time by Saudi youth.
In 1975-1976, start a full-scale evaluation of
all the existing services that provide or _ support youth activity in the kingdom.
In 1975-1976, start developing the tests and
evaluation scale for physical fitness, imple menting the study first among general educa tion students age 12 to 18.
2. Regulations '
A. Develop and issue regulations to govern the organization and work of clubs and other youth
Institutions, athletic training, committees
of the Supreme Council for Youth Welfare, and
relations among agencies concerned with youth
Issue regulations relating to contests and to
the award of badges and citations for ath letic and other activities (1976-1978).
Athletic activities— 65 trainers and 1,4-00
referees will undergo training or upgrading
Vocational and other activities--two-week
training courses will be held for 1,140
Library and Documentation
A. In 1975-1976, establish a special youth wel
fare library at the new GPYW premises in
Riyadh, to provide both general reference
books and special services to youth leaders
As a part of the library, establish a center
for documentation concerning the SCYW and
the GPYW, research studies, and youth welfare
agencies in other,countries; in 1978-1979
make the documentation center a function in dependent of the youth welfare library..
5. Public Information and Conferences
Issue a youth magazine, starting in 1975-1976
and a weekly review of youth activities.
Hold press conferences as newsworthy events
occur, and as a means of distributing the
weekly reviews (1975-1980).
Issue a*youth welfare guide as an easy-
reference to all the kingdom's relevant
agencies and organizations., and an annual
D. Obtain more films and slides for both par
ticipants and leaders in athletic and other
Hold annual conferences for youth leaders and
for the boards of directors of clubs and
athletic societies; hold a special conference,
annually for the purpose of evaluating
progress in implementing the youth welfare
In viewing the geo-historic and cultural back
ground of Saudi Arabia, it is clear that Saudi Arabia
is in the process of emerging to the reality of the 20th
century5 rather abruptly forming large pre-industrial
cities that are rapidly longing to fall under the category
of industrial cities.
The increasing rural migration to the cities, the
establishment of new settlements, and the increase in the
number of educated citizens are obvious indications of
a trend towards a vital, modern approach to urban life,
which requires a whole new set of services and facilities
to accommodate the varied activities for a unique situa tion to a developing country.
The different regions of Arabia had experienced
different acculturation processes.
While the central
middle of Arabia (Nejd) remained isolated from the outside
world until recently, the western province (Hijaz) under
went an acculturation of a religious nature where people
from different Islamic societies have immigrated to this
area for a long time and the eastern province (al^Hasa)
has gone through an acculturation process of commercial
and industrial nature.
To the south, the province of
Asir remained isolated except for some influence from
Yemen and Africa across the Red S e a .
The Saudi Arabian society at the present time
operates with some dominant cultural concerns as the back bone for its heritage. These cultural concerns evolve
around religion3 traditionalism, familialism, sexual
modesty and education.
Since modern urban life in its physical and
social presence is a concept that took its full develop
ment in the industrial and post-industrial cities of
Western civilization, it is inevitable for the developing
countries to adopt Western techniques for planning.
Infrastructure or for that matter any physical structure
is readily accepted.
The conflict arises when Western
social organizations are adopted.
It is exigent to place
the cultural concerns of a society at the top priority
for planning native urban centers utilizing Western tools.
An awareness from the part of designers and
planners to understand the Arabian culture is exigent in
order to achieve congruent rather than conflicting design
There are programs designed by the Saudi govern ment to change urban life.
In comparing the service and
recreational programs with the population of the cities
of the country, one deduces the following observations.
There is an awareness to provide sufficient
services such as medical and postal.
Cultural and social
programs are yet to be studied and distributed without
centralization to be reached by larger segments of the
society. As will be detailed in later chapters of this
study3 an idea such as establishing MSNC should act as
a spatial definer or an organizing authority bringing to
reality many governmental programs under one r o o f .
the trend in Arabia is towards integration, modernization
and the enjoyment of urban life, the idea of'MSNC's
might create a better- communication and accessibility to
the city amenities.
Geo-historic and Cultural Background of Riyadh •
Due to the slow growth of the city of Riyadh in
former t i m e s , t h e center of town has maintained a con
tinuous pattern of linked expansions to serve the people
who settled in its periphery.
It was established as the
capital of the Saudi family in l8l8 before they became
the rulers of Arabia.
The Arab historian, al-Bustani,
described Riyadh in 1887 as a city of 40,000 inhabitants,
built in a fashion of a square, fenced and surrounded
Around it one finds the palm groves and
sections separated by large streets.
In the northeastern
section of town, one notices the palaces of the nobles
and the villas of the notables of the elites and the
The northwestern section was built in a modest
and conventional style and was inhabited by the general
populace. The southwest section was chosen by the re ligious authorities, "Wahabis," as their place for
residence and operations, for it is clean and not as
crowded as the other p a rts.
The southeast section became
the place for the low class 3 gangs and the undesired
(Kahhalah 1964, p. 100).
Kahhalah states that the above
description of Riyadh held true until 1940. Then Riyadh's
growth and development increased.
Al-Sharif (1975) described the development of
Riyadh in three stages according to the quantitative and
qualitative changes that the city was exposed to.
first stage extended from the mid-l8th century until the
beginning of the 20th century (150 years).
stage occupied the first half of this century, and the
third stage is marked by the demolishing of the remnants
of its city walls in 1950.
The second stage, which was
a period of moderate growth, has flourished into an un
controlled, sudden and phenomenal expansion after the
Even before the mid-l8th century, Riyadh was the
center for its region, and the connecting point between
Eastern and Western Arabia, as well as a seat of govern
ment for middle Arabia by the Caliphs in Damascus and
later Baghdad. Riyadh was known as "Hajr."
population growth remained at a low level by one or two
tribes until their numbers increased as the village
gained importance and was protected by its walls.
location of Najr, the capital of Yammama province during
the eighth and ninth centuries corresponds to the present
location of the C B D .
The city grew around its center in
different forms (Figure 3)•
Population Growth of Riyadh
Riyadh has experienced a steady population growth in the During the first decade of the 20th century 14,000 people resided, in Riyad, and according to
Riyadh Action Master Plan (Ministry of Municipal and Rural
Affairs Report 2, 1977a; hereinafter referred to as MOMRA)
the projected population for 1980 is 1,0 30,0 30 (Tables
3 and 4).
As has always been expressed by researchers,
there still are not reliable population census in the
cities of Saudi Arabia that even statistical projections
of different sources are not in agreement.
Action Master Plan, realizes the importance of accurate
population forecasts .
The Master- Plan suggests that the
difficulties in obtaining population forecasts are caused
by the lack of adequate indicators and by quick changes
occurring in trends since 1973•
Riyadh Action Master Plan
socioeconomic survey of the central region of Arabia that
was conducted by SCET International in 1974, on the
basis of the master plan estimate, made the forecast in
19725= 1930 s
Evolution of Riyadh. — Taken from al-
Sharlf (1975, p. 458).
Table 3- Estimated population of Riyadh.*
82,000 ■ .
* Taken from al-Sharif (1975, p. 177).
Average Annual Rate
SCET International population estimate of
Figures of Table 4 should be compared with those
of 1974 census and more recent projections of informed
sources until 1980 (Table 5)•
1980 of informed sources until
1980 s Annual growth rate for this period is 7•5%.
According to the Master Plan, the most recent
projections are almost 30 percent higher than the previ ous ones. This number may be reduced in the the following reasons.
1. Most of the difference is' foreign population, which should not continue to
grow at recent rates' since this is not compatible
with the social goals of the Saudi government.
Since the role of the foreign population will be.
to operate and maintain facilities built during
the initial development phase, the growth rate
of foreign population should therefore decrease
as the emerging Saudi labor force takes over.
The immigration of rural population to Riyadh
seems to be declining.
This hypothesis can be
better evaluated when the results of the socio economic survey are published.
These first demographic projections will be re vised after the publication of the socioeconomic survey.
However, it is safe to take, the 1,300,000 population
forecasts for 1990 as a reasonable working hypothesis,
with a margin of plus 20 percent to account for the
ability of Saudis to replace foreigners, the population
of Riyadh could then be 1-3 to 1.5 million in 1990.
five percent is due to natural increase."
indicates that the average annual rate of increase is
If the net rate of increase remains the
s a m e , the city of Riyadh will double its- population with in ten y e a r s .
Riyadh's population has increased ten-fold
during the last four decades.
Like many other developing countries 3 urban
growth has been attributed to the shift of residence from
rural areas to the cities.
The city, with its economic,
educational and cultural opportunities; and the village,
with its isolation, bad conditions and unemployment, have
contributed to the shift of residence, and unlike the
majority of the developing countries, Riyadh's population
has increased due to foreign labor and technocrat migra tion to the city.
Like any booming city in the Third W o rld, Riyadh's
urban growth is fast and hard to predict.
unlike Western cities, Riyadh, in its urban ex pansion, defies all available concepts and m o d e l s .
Riyadh manifests more alternative types of urban
It differs from Western cities in
housing materials, architectures, mixed land-use
patterns, socioeconomic structure, and the inter personal. relationships among its peo p l e .
expansion of the city has not meant the decline
or weakening of communal ties or family relation ships (Malik 1973} p. 10).
Undoubtedly, the increase of population created
new demands of spatial and social nature.
newcomers reside in new neighborhoods, thus giving them
a heterogeneous character,
Poor migrants and immigrants
reside in the older neighborhoods.
Another aspect of
Riyadh's growth is the ratio between females and m a l e s .
Studies oh selected development problems in various
Middle Eastern countries' (Abu-al-Ila 1972, p. 208) show
that the percentage of males to females, in Riyadh in
1971-1972 is 57 percent to 43 percent.
The- sex ratio
(number of men per 100 women) in Riyadh is 130 (Malik
1973, p .
The increase of male population is due to
young men coming to the city in search of jobs.
causes a social pressure in a conservative society in
which the interaction between men and women is considered
a taboo especially in public places.
increase of population creates a great demand for social
and recreational facilities and thoughtfully planned open
Spatial Arrangement of Riyadh
Malik (1973, p- 77) in his dissertation'described
spatial arrangements of Riyadh in terms of the concentfic-
zone theory, the sector theory and the multlple-nuclei
To sum up, the three theories on city growth
and structure .
should not be viewed separately.
Rather each theory should be considered a sequen
tial development towards a holistic, theory of
growth and structure.
Most cities exhibit a
combination of these three theories of spatial
For the purpose of this study, it is essential to view the spatial arrangement of Riyadh in terms of service and recreational needs of the city. The main focal point of Riyadh is still the central business district,
"Justice Plaza," for it contains the administrative and
57 commercial activities.
The acceleration of growth in
Riyadh has created new residential suburbs linked.to the
center of town by means of wide boulevards.
boulevards one notices the new commercial developments:
furniture display and storage buildings, machinery, and
auto display halls and new multi-story residential and
These new residential clusters, unlike
traditional Arab urban forms, do not evolve around the
mosque or local market place.
Rather these two features
are built as a result of the expansion of the residential
buildings in a district.
People rely on neighboring
markets or mosques until their own are provided. .
As the city expands it is physically impossible
for the population to rely on one single center (central
Therefore separate nuclei emerge.
"These separating factors are high rent, the size of the
population, and the necessary placement of large and
attractive recreational facilities in less crowded areas"
(Harris and Ullman 1951, p. 232).
Service and Recreational Programs a n d .
Facilities at the City Level
Riyadh Action Master Plans 1977 referred to pro
jects that were mentioned in the Saudi Second.Development
Plan.: Most projects were discussed in general and at the
58 city level. There were no mentions of services or facili ties at the neighborhood or community level.
Several social welfare institutions are planned
for Riyadh, including a home for handicapped children and
the expansion of the rehabilitation center. Health pro
grams have encountered important delays because of the
difficulty of acquiring suitable land.
Recently a new
contract was awarded for the construction of 50 clinics
in prefabricated materials to be implemented throughout
the Riyadh a r e a .
The General Presidency of Youth Welfare programs
include the International Sport Stadium, the youth wel
fare center, indoor swimming pools, gymnasia, permanent
camps, and youth hostels.
Major emphasis is placed on
the development of youth leaders and the provision of
equipment and facilities.
Riyadh Action Master Plan describes the community
services as "social overhead" in opposition to infra structures, which are mainly underground.
could be supplied by both public or private organizations.
The services in the plan are schools, hospitals and
dispensaries, post offices, mosques, public security
services and administrative services.
The plan suggests that the" responsibility of
supplying the "social overhead" lies upon the central
government through its technical agencies, but that its
location is the responsibility of the concerned community.
Here, the municipality of Riyadh is assisted by the
Ministry of Municipal and Rural Affairs (MOMRA).
Recreation and Green Space
The availability of recreational and green spaces
is important and necessary for the quality of urban life
in a large city like Riyadh located in a harsh climate
The supply of green space is completely dependent
upon the availability of water for irrigation,
master plan of Riyadh views water as the scarcest economic
resource in Saudi Arabia and must be used to provide the
maximum economic return.
Water should also be viewed in
its social benefits in recreation, not in purely economic
Naseer (1978, p. 58) states: "The Kingdom of
Saudi Arabia and Riyadh in particular is in a very urgent
need for additional recreational facilities.
courses, lakes, etc., are non-existent." .
The present total area of developed, public spaces
is 8l hectares (1 hectare = 2.#71 acres), giving a ratio
2 of 0.7 m per inhabitant. The master plan standards used for neighborhood and district parks within residential
communities indicate 1.5 m per inhabitant for neighbor-
hood and district parks and 4 m for regional parks and
major open spaces.
The classification of green spaces
according to the master plan is as follows.
In the low density residential
d i s t r i c t s m a i n l y in the northern part of the city, indi vidual houses are usually surrounded by gardens.
contribution to the landscape is only in the fact that
they could be seen from the streets above surrounding
No survey was available to estimate the area' and
water consumption; however, the plan estimate is 300
hectares consuming 6,000,000 m /year, which is about 20
percent of the present total water consumption of Riyadh.
Public Gardens, and Recreation Areas .
represent 67 hectares of al-Malaz Racetrack and recrea tional area and 126 hectares being acquired.
Approximately 500 km of streets
On the average, each street will
have a continuous two to three meters wide central strip..
and two non-eontinuous one meter wide lateral strips =
Water requirement will be approximately 3,000 ? 000
m / y ear.
They are located west and northwest
of Riyadh, constituting 2,000 hectares.
area' can be estimated' at 1,100 hectares, the remaining
'900 hectares are old neglected palm groves.
New Major Projects.
The new projects constitute
40 hectares for the government center, 120 hectares for
the new diplomatic quarters, 550 hectares for the sports
city of which 110 hectares devoted for green space.
Dirab Park project has been postponed.
According to the master plan, 2,400 hectares al
ready exist and 800 hectares are being planned for green
space and recreational use in Saudi Arabia of which 1,000 hectares are planned for Riyadh. The spatial standard
for Riyadh recreational use is 30 m /inhabitant which is
acceptable. However, this spatial standard is not actu
ally available for recreation or environmental improve-\
m e n t . Private gardens and palm groves amount to 70 per cent of this area.
Eight hundred fifty hectares of the
public green space cannot be used for recreation, since
350 hectares belong to walled public buildings, even
though a recent regulation imooses "transparent"
fences around public buildings so as to^make the garden
visible from the street.
Therefore, only approximately 500 hectares will
remain for beautification and recreation in Riyadh, sub divided as follows:
200 hectares for street planting.
110 hectares for green space for Sports City.
190 hectares for public gardens and recreation areas.
Riyadh Action Master Plan (MOMRA, Report 2, 1977a,
p. 45), suggests the following future policies to give the
city the required green space:
Preserving existing assets.
Creating new recreation areas.
Conserving w a t e r .
Preserving Existing Assets.
This includes the
protection of existing palm groves, from urbanization but
also reclaiming some palm groves which have been
neglected or abandoned.
Creating New Recreation Areas.
This can be done
not only by creating new parks but by using more effi ciently all available green spaces.
As seen before numerous projects include the pro minimum amount of limited access green space (prevent
the privatization of green areas in public projects).
Street plantings should be adapted to climatic conditions.
Linear plantings, especially in the street medians, are:
1. Inefficient, since irrigation losses by evapora tion are large (the planting of grass is particu
larly wasteful because of evapo-transpiration
2. Dangerous, because many people use these spaces for resting after lunch or in the evening and interfere with the traffic.
Plantings should be located where their density is. suffi
cient to create a micro-climate and reduce evaporation
losses (on large sidewalks in street corners, etc.).
This assumes changing the design of streets by
reducing the median and widening the sidewalks (Sitteen
Conservation of W a t e r .
Street plantings could waste less water and be of more use to people. Two other methods could provide water savings.•
The present method of
irrigation by submersion wastes water and results
in saline soil..
Other techniques such as
sprinkling or localized irrigation would econo
mize water and facilitate the recovery of some
neglected palm groves.
Use of City Water for Irrigation.
is used to irrigate most private gardens.
water is mainly obtained from deep fossil
acquifers and submitted to complicated treatment.
Reverse osmosis will be used in the future to
reduce dissolved solids to less than 0.5 g / 1 ,
increasing the cost of water to more than 2 SR/m.
At present, users are not effectively charged
A day may come, however, when actual water costs
This could reduce the irrigation of gardens.
This does not necessarily imply a reduction of the area
planted; a change in types of planting could suffice.
Open lawns requiring large amounts of water could be re duced and bushes and trees could be increased.
This trend could be accelerated by reduction of
subsidies for operating the water utility.
agencies responsible for public green spaces should be
charged actual production costs to induce water conserva tion.
In addition they could be directed to use surface
water for irrigation through, ponding.
The Concept of Public Space
The most important public space has always been
the marketplace. Villages, towns and cities have evolved
around the marketplace.
In reviewing the history of
Arabian urban centers at their flourishing period during
Medieval times, one discovers that the "suq" which means
"market," was not only a container of commercial activi ties -
It was always a generating source of social and
This stems from the fact that
the suq was arranged so as to create open space in the
form of "maydan" or "public square" which is usually
associated with the Grand Mosque and the local government
building, as well as "funduqs" or "hotels" and coffee
shops (Figure 4).
It is evident in an Arab city like Riyadh, for
example, that these features still exist.
Square" is the maydan of Riyadh.
It is the traditional
open space in the center of town.
It was the place for
processions of the ruler and military parades .
had a carnival type atmosphere at night,, and it was the
scene for such public events as political gatherings,
public executions and funerals of distinguished persons,
becuase of its proximity to the Grand Mosque.
At the present time, the open space of the maydan
is used to accommodate parking for
Only for special occasions is it
cleared of the automobiles.
Riyadh Action Master Plan
describes the central area as commercially a c t i v e .. New :
S u q .
commercial projects include "the renovation of the com
mercial sectors surrounding the central mosque, including,
in addition to various public buildings, two new commer cial centers.
It will have parking spaces for 3,000 cars,
which, however, should be doubled to meet the needs of
the complex" (MOMRA, Report 2, 1977a,P • 39).
Renovating the central district commercially alone
is not going to prove congruent with the government in tention of revitalizing this a rea.
are moving out of the center along the axis radiating from
i t , thus following the consumers of the suburbs.
government policy to work effectively, social services and
recreational facilities should be an. integral part of
designing the commercial center.
Another aspect of public space in the Arabian cul ture is the vastness of the desert.
As the city expands,
people drive farther into the desert for picnicking and
The satisfaction of this activity is diminishing
as the population of Riyadh increases and as large tracts
of public lands become private property.
The unavailability of public spaces warrants a
need for a serious approach to providing the necessary
spaces as the trend of urban projects emphasizes resi dential, industrial and commercial development.
of MSNC should provide an opportunity of public space in
a growing urban situation.
states that the public sector and the municipality in
particular own very little land that could be put on the
market for government projects or public services.
Within this general framework it appears that the
selection of a project site is mainly determined by
1. Land cannot generally be secured for land acqui sition.
The national budget allocates a certain amount
for land acquisition.
The Master Plan indicated that there is no real .
land development policy and that the government has ad
justed passively to the whims of the land mar k e t ; even
traditional tools of a land policy have not been used,
such as :
Creation of land reserves in areas planned for
urban extension in order to release these re
serves on the land market when the need appears
and at a competitive p r i c e .
Taxes on undeveloped land to prevent hoarding in
Economic incentives when development is in the
public interest (bonus for providing public
The. land acquisition difficulties have prevented
and will prevent the optimum location of recreational and
service "social overhead" facilities.
stem from the .lack of publicly held land, financial con
straints, high cost of land and the independent behavior
of public agencies.
There is a great need for a centralized land de
velopment organization able to supply land to public
agencies preferably for large-scale projects at suitable
The phenomenal growth of the city of Riyadh and
the lack of public land to provide services such as the
"social overhead" and especially open space for recreation
might make urban life unbearable.
Special attention to
these issues and a firm policy for land acquisition are
urgent matters not to be delayed in Riyadh.
REVIEW OF LITERATURE
This chapter is presented in two sections.
first section deals with trends in the design concept of
MSNCj the concepts of recreation and leisure time, and
facilities and services for recreation. The second sec
old and new approaches, and finally, the approach utilized
in formulating, the research method for this study..
Trends in Design
The landscape architect as an urban designer is
concerned with the urban setting as a who l e
he must be concerned with the design p rocess.
(quoted by Sommer 1969, p • 132) described it, "the process
of continuous environmental experience" is what he called
Architecture and landscape architecture have al
ways emphasized the physical aspects of design, leaving
the sociocultural and visual aspects of design at an
A note from an earlier period in this century3 as quoted by Wise (1970, p. 225), illustrates this attitude.
Throughout the book the committee has layed par
ticular stress On the economic and engineering
side of city planning., because it believes that
that is fundamental to progress, and while, as
architects, the members of the committee are
necessarily strongly interested in the aesthetic
side of city planning, they are firmly convinced
that city planning in America has been retarded
because the first emphasis has been given to the
"city beautiful" instead of "city practical."
They insist with vigor that all city planning
should start on a foundation of economic practicable
ness and good business; that it must be something
which will appeal to the businessman, and to the
manufacturer, as sane and reasonable.
The above statement was a summary of "City Planning Pro gress in 1917" of a report prepared by the Committee on .
Town Planning of the American Institute of Architects.
However, this important issue of sociocultural
and behavioral aspects of design has captured the imagina tion and interest of these professions.
As a result of .
the new trends of the late 1960s in the United States and
Britain, this emphasis has repeatedly appeared in
professional and academic periodicals in several fields
which deal with the study of and.design for human beings
(Sommer 1969, Deasy 197^, Spyer -1971, Gold 1973).
These studies are numerous and were done at
different scales, utilizing different techniques, such as
interviewing, questionnaires, observations, and in differ ent fields— ethology, anthropology, psychology, and
72 sociology 3 e t c .
Studies were done at a bathroom level
(Kira 1966) and at a neighborhood level (Saarinen 1976).
Van der Ryn (1968, p. 8), professor of architec
ture at The University of California, Berkeley, stated his
experience with the center for environmental structure as
a way of "exposing what the social and behavioral context
of a problem is about."
This study of multi-service neighborhood centers
(MSNC) has been inspired by the idea .of designing com
munity centers in the United States which will contain
shopping, governmental, recreational and medical services
to be an integral part of the community (Redstone 1975)•
El Con Shopping Center’s future plans, according to.Fred
Pesci (1 9 7 7 ) is an example of this trend.
If it is acceptable in the American culture to
associate some of the community recreational facilities
to determine such uses for the Arabian culture. Discus
sions with some Saudi Arabian students at The University
of Arizona in Tucson indicate a mixed reaction towards
associating the MSNC with the existing neighborhood suq;
however, they welcomed the idea of establishing a MSNC
■in the area.
This could be due to the change of cultural
perception after they have been in the United States for
The idea of establishing a center that provides
recreational opportunities and service facilities is a
new one for Saudi Arabia.
The urgency.of services such
as postal and medical care are tangible to the policy
makers in Saudi Arabia.
It is their distribution among
the society which requires attention.
They could be
associated with community recreational facilities to in sure their accessibility by the public and to find a readily available method of distributing all kinds of
needed services to t h e .communities and neighborhoods of
cities according to needs and special characteristics, • thus utilizing one model for distributing, services.
The Saudi Arabian government has already launched
programs for social welfare, health and communication.
Recreation at the neighborhood level is not viewed as im portant by the General Presidency of Youth Welfare nor by
the city of Riyadh, probably for a lack of guidance,
citizen participation and methods and techniques' of
gathering and analyzing data.
The nature and importance of recreation doesn't
seem to be fully understood by the Saudi Arabian urban
planners and decision makers. The awareness of recrea
tional needs are not fully recognized as a necessity, let
alone their allocation•and distribution.
thrust of the following review of literature will .
concentrate on recreation.
The theme of this research evolves around recreation. .
Multi-Service Neighborhood Centers (MSNC)
In the United States, the functions of MSNCs
offer social, educational, health, recreational and cul tural services to residents.
Examples of these centers
are "A" Mountain Neighborhood Center and El Rio Center in
It is a place where many people of all
ages can m e e t , exchange ideas, obtain needed services, and
get information about other services offered throughout the
city. Some residents, lacking social, economic and physi cal mobility, have special n e e d s .
The centers give
priority to serving these people as they express their
special needs and wishes.
If the emphasis in the United
States is to design centers that serve low and moderate
income communities, especially in the inner city and de
lapidated areas, the emphasis in Saudi Arabia should be
on the establishment of centers for all levels of society.
As far as recreational facilities and other services are
concerned,, for the most part,, they don't exist in any
Saudi Arabian neighborhood.
For example, a center that
exists in a high-income neighborhood will differ in
function from one that provides services for. a low.income
neighborhood.' In some cases, social welfare and adult •
education are more important than recreation or health,
75 e t c .
Every neighborhood will have, special needs.
Policy for the MSNC
In p art, the following was adopted from Llewelyn-
Special priorities should be given not only to
low and moderate income residents, but^ rather, to
all the less mobile people of the city— the poor, the
elderly, and y o u t h .
Centers should offer different services, and,
therefore, attract a combination of special need resi dents and other residents.
Centers should provide comprehensive services
that deliberately reinforce desired effects (that is,
the center has a responsibility to see that a person
seeking one service knows about and can get other
services that further his or her desired benefit from
the sought-after service).
Service, areas are communities or neighborhoods
that are unified by common characteristics such as
physical boundaries, pattern and density of urban
development, economic level,, environmental condition
and social setting.
The center serves a primary impact area, and to
Services of the MSNC
The nature of services of a multi-service neigh
borhood center are much different than those offered in
the American version.
The center in America concentrates
its services mainly on special need groups in disadvan taged areas of the urban environment.
The Arabian version is a new concept to serve all
segments of society with their varied economic, social
and educational levels. Determining programs and facili ties will vary accordingly.
Residents of any neighborhood
tend to have m a n y , rather than singular, needs and wants.
Llewelyn-Davis Associates (1975, p. 66) suggest a basic
This package consists of "comprehen
sive services" that can be interpreted as a combination
of services that compliment each other and respond in de liberate fashion to the need of the resident.
gest that each neighborhood center should contain two
comprehensive service programs.
One addresses the special
needs of less mobile residents; the other addresses needs
of all residents in the service area.
To generalize this concept for the Saudi Arabian
neighborhoods, a "basic package" could be divided into
77 two p a r t s .
Primary services for special needs not
according to mobility, but according to preference or the
arousal of special situations.
Secondary services, will
meet the needs of the remaining population.
strategy should be: a. To provide services that people need urgently.
To make available the services that would comple ment the service of primary need.
To open up the resident's perspective to the
opportunities and options that a complement of
services affords him or h e r .
A comprehensive package for all Saudi Arabian
neighborhoods should include some or all of the following
1. Recreation (playgrounds, open space, sports).
2. Social (welfare,, counseling) .
3. Culture (events, celebrations).
Communication (transportation, postal, telephone,
5. Information (bulletin boards, referral).
6. Education (libraries, adult education, classes in special interests).
7.. Health (child care, immunization, first aid) .
What is of primary importance to a neighborhood
may be of a secondary importance to another neighborhood,
and vice versa. •
Many of these services, such as adult education,,
health programs, social welfare are existent in central ized facilities...
What is needed is a decentralization
process by which services are reached by larger segments
of the society who need them.
Recreation and open space
in the forms of playgrounds, ballfields and neighborhood
parks are very essential, but virtually ignored in Saudi
After analyzing a primary impact area, one might
find, certain facilities are provided for, therefore,. the
MSMC will provide what is missing.
For al-Zahra neighborhood, a primary function of
a MSMC will be recreation.
There is a lack of indoor
and outdoor recreation spaces and facilities.. The im
portance of recreation should be taken seriously by
government officials to be provided at the neighborhood level. A better understanding of recreation importance r and its value to the society is presented in the follow ing p a g e s .
leisure-time activity which is pursued for its own.sake.
Dumazedier (quoted by Burton 1971, p. 19) views recreation
vides relaxation, it provides entertainment, and it
provides a means for personal and social development.
Butler (1976, p. 3) states that recreation has
been defined as a type of experience, an area of rich and
abundant living., a specific form of activity, an attitude
or spirit, "off-the-job" living, an expression of the
inner nature of man, a social system, a phase of educa tion, an outlet for the creative u r g e , a means for lift ing the wings of the spirit.
It has been described as fun, refreshment, and diversion, and as the most serious • and more passive type of playful activity. These defini tions, however,: are too general, and therefore inadequate.
Butler (1976, p. 10), however, suggests this
definition: Recreation is a feeling of well-being that
results from experiences in which the individual receives
a pleasurable and gratifying response to the use of his
physical, mental, or creative powers.
In short, recrea
tion is the essence of any experience through which the
individual directly gains personal enjoyment and satis faction.
This concept emphasizes the personal nature of
recreation and explains why recreation activities are. as
diverse as the interests of m a n .
It is usually experi-
enced during an individual's leisure, but it can result
from participation in any form of activity at any' time.
Psychology and physiology deal with the observa
tion, description and explanation of the play of animals,
children and grown-ups.
They try to determine the nature
and significance of play and to assign it its place in
the scheme of.life.
The high importance of this place
and the necessity, or at least the utility, of play as
a function are generally taken for granted and form the
starting point of all such scientific researches.
numerous attempts to define the biological function of
play show striking variation.
By some, the origin and
fundamentals of play have been described as a discharge
of superabundant vital energy, by others as the satis
faction, of some "imitative instinct," or again as simply
a "need" for relaxation.
According to one theory, play
constitutes a training of the young creature for the
serious work that life will demand later on.
to another, it serves as an exercise in restraint needful
to the individual.
Some find the principle of play in
an innate urge to exercise a certain faculty, or in the
desire to dominate or compete,
let another regards it
as an "abrecation" an outlet for harmful impulses, as'
the necessary restorer of energy wasted by one-sided
to keep up the feeling of personal value, e t c .
(Huizinga 1970, pp. 1-2).
The theory of recreation as self-expression is
summarized by Butler (19763■see Appendix A).
Recreation agencies and professional leaders con
sider the term "recreation" as it applies to those activi
ties that are socially acceptable and personally
It has been said that leisure activities
cannot be recreation unless they are morally sound,
mentally and physically upbuilding and respectful of the
rights of others.
It goes without saying that many values that
have been attributed to recreation apply only
to those forms that are beneficial to the indi vidual and to society.
Furthermore, these are
the only types of recreation that can,justifiably
be provided by public o r .community-supported
agencies (Butler 1976, p. 9)•
The importance of recreation as a fundamental
human need is recognized by psychologists, sociologists,
urban planners, community leaders and politicians.
ation undoubtedly contributes to human happiness.
needs such as the pursuit of happiness, the love of
adventure, and the desire for achievement are motivating
forces which are realized most fully in recreation.
Because it makes such experiences possible for large
numbers of people, the recreation movement has been
called the nearest approach to a practical program for
carrying into effect and keeping alive a philosophy of
In the United States, recent changes In life styles have their own influence on recreation: the growth of cities into crowded and unsafe streets, build
ings with no open spaces between them, polluted streams
and lakes; the closing of large areas to public use due •
to industry and transportation and the dissolving of the
neighborliness' once known in villages and small t o wns.
The flight to the suburbs by most middle- and upper-
income groups has deprived city dwellers of recreation,
Man as an outdoor animal has compensated
for the loss of natural resources by the provision of
recreation spaces, facilities and leadership.
conditions of urban living, opportunities for such com
panionship are found largely through organized recreation"
(Butler 1976, p. 16).
Changing in home conditions, where mechanical
devices have revolutionized housekeeping methods, is a
direct factor in the demand for spending gained time for
In tight urban developments where
the traditional town square or the home backyard is in
creasingly eliminated, urban designers have provided
recreation spaces especially with the increase of the
number of multi-family dwellings, condominiums and apart ment developments.
The popularity of outdoor recreation, according to Clawson, is caused by the growth in population, leisure time, disposable income and transportation.
Davis (1970, p. 115) argues that this approach of viewing recreation is superficial for current and future planning needs.
It seems to me rather self-evident that Clawson's
original thoughts on this matter are correct--as
far as they go.
What I am suggesting here is
that there are other things changing in the
society that are more basic, that lie behind
these four variables, and it is these more
we as recreation planners should be analyzing.
the Western society.
1. A shifting philosophy in the cultural viewpoint .
valuable than play is slowly shifting.
2. There is an upward change in the man-hour pro
duction capabilities in all major facets of the
economy. Automation and its offspring, cyber netics, are replacing the man on the job.
3. There are major changes in the nature of the _ individual's work. In the past, most jobs re
quired a certain amount of mental ability, though,
obviously there was great variation from one job
Many occupations offered some degree
84 of personal challenge, of skills, coordination, '
strength, or judgment and even aesthetic choice.
As these qualities of work are lost, perhaps the
individual turns to some form of recreationto
seek his fulfillment.
This- argument by Davis
is not fully supported by historic analysis of
the nature of work, therefore it is debatable.
The difficulty to change with change: as the
productive capacity of the society continues to
rise, more and more people will find that their
traditional work abilities are simply unneeded.
. . . it is reshaping and■restructing patterns
of social interdependence and every aspect of
our personal life. It is forcing us to re
consider and reevaluate practically every thought,
ever action, and every institution formerly ' taken for granted.
Everything is changing, you,
your family, your neighborhood, your education,
your job, your government', your relation to
others. And they are changing dramatically .
. . Innumerable confusions and a profound ;
feeling of despair inevitably emerge in periods
of great technological and cultural transforma tion.
Our age- of anxiety is in great part, the
result of trying to do today's job with yesterday's
5. Urbanization: Davis (1970, p. 118) quotes
Perlof to illustrate this point./
Once we realize that by the year 2000 urban
environments will: have to be provided for as
many additional people as are now living in
our cities, the possibilities appear in their
This argument applies to most Saudi Arabian cities. :
Most urbanization as a change of lifestyle from
rural to urban was experienced in the United States be
fore the beginning of the second part of this century.
This phenomena was caused by the highly advanced techno
logical achievements in agricultural production which
forced farm labor to seek the growing market for work in.
the cities. However, the American society is still con sidered a mobile society of urbanites.
The United States has a strikingly mobile popu lation.
It is estimated that more than one
family in five changes its p l a c e 'of residence
every year and that nearly one out of four
Such mobility removes people from their accus
tomed environment, deprives them of the feeling
of belonging, and creates a sense of instability
that affects both children and.adults.
balanced recreation program helps families
become adjusted in their new community setting
.(Butler 1976, p . 19)• •
Migration from rural to urban areas, the settle
ment of nomadic tribes and the immigration to Saudi
Arabia is still taking place, as was discussed in
The establishing of multi-service centers
will prove to be a valid tool to help merging popula tions adjust.to a new lifestyle.
The changes of urban population from small
communities to large cities, and metropolis resulted in
the creation of crowded and congested neighborhoods in
which children had no plaae to play in safety, no place
for senior citizens to promenade and no place for adults
The'most important factor that recreation evolves
around is leisure.time and its effective utilization.
The increase in leisure time in affluent societies can be
viewed on the one hand as a great boon to the individual
and society if planned for wisely.
On the other hand, it
may become.a liability or a menace if it is used for
unsocial ends'. Leisure time used unwisely.
in boredom, apathy, too much drinking, gambling, promis cuity , etc.
A general examination of leisure time is
An understanding of leisure-time is essential to
a better understanding of recreation.
It is beyond the
scope of this research to delve into all aspects of
However, it is worthwhile to present a
few current thoughts on the subject.
is generalized in order to relate it to the trends of
society in Saudi Arabia since there is no information
available at present regarding leisure t i m e :in that
87 upon the topic (see Research Question
Chapter 5), but
only on a small scale. The findings concern how respon
dents spend their leisure time rather than how much time
is considered leisure.
Gold (1973) divides the leisure philosophy into
two periods: the pre-industrial period and life pattern
associated with i t , and the post-industrial period and
•its evolving life patterns, which also include the
It was only with the development of agricultural
surpluses and the urban society which made this possible
that those who held power were able to devote some of .
their time to leisure.
Most anthropologists associate
early concepts of leisure with r i t u a l p l a y and enforced
idleness because of weather, illness or age.
of labor and consequent development of social classes
gave certain individuals control over their resources and
A distinction between work and non-work for at
least the upper classes in the Egyptian, Grecian and
Roman civilizations and through the Renaissance to the
industrial revolution is evident.
Gold points out two
major themes that evolved during the pre-industrial
Leisure as a way of life for the selected upper
classes, and leisure in limited amounts as a reward for
the lower or working classes.
Saudi Arabia being a pre-
industrial society emerging into the industrial era is
experiencing the transformation into more leisure t i m e .
Only in the past few years has the work week been re
duced from six days to five days, and only recently, as
was discussed previously in Chapter 2, that provision
for leisure became a government concern.
The post-industrial concepts of leisure are a
result of the concentration of workers around their
instances, reduced the amount of available open space.
Reduction in work hours have increased leisure time and
created the need for institutionalized recreational oppor tunities. Rapoport and Rapoport (1975, p .
t h a t :
There has been an overall increase in time
available to spend as one .chooses and. in the
economic, technological and. organizational
wherewithal to make use of it.
week has dropped from an estimated 70 hour,
six-day week in 1850 to the present, norm of
40 hour, five-day week with strong movement
in the direction o.f a 35 hour, four-day and
.other variants of a shorter working week.
The increase or decrease of the amount of leisure time throughout history and factors that caused it are not the pressing issue: it is the cultural view.of
leisure that concerns the recreation planner and designer.
Burch ('1970, p. 6 3 ) states:
Seldom do we recognize that mass leisure is
Our.real question is not "Why do we
have so much leisure," but rather "Why is our
leisure apparently problematic."
An attempt to display a thought pattern explaining
changes in time of human social organizations as they re
late to. work hours and leisure time was illustrated by
ethnographic studies which roughly run the continuum from
tribal to post-industrial societies (see Figure 5)•
intention of this graph is not to indicate a hierarchy
of social progress .
It consists of handy empirical
points around which to. group our thinking.
In sum, our data indicate that subsistence man has
his leisure activity and time blocs shaped by the shift
of seasons rather than the ticking of a clock or the
rationality of the Gregorian calendar.• His time is
measured by seasons rather than seconds and minutes; the
passion for speed and efficiency are sporadic rather than
It makes a good deal of difference in
one's orientation.to life if one has a conception of
minute divisions ever dribbling a w a y , or whether one sees
life divided into the broad time span of seasons with
their attendant problems and ritualized celebrations.
One is concerned with the leavings of time, the other
with tasks to be done and the great value of time gaps
between the tasks.
Even though the graph was highly imaginative,
we should resist the charming tendency to draw noble
FEU D A L
(S uye Mura)
POST - INDUSTRIAL
Percentage o f Labor Force in
80 % 30
Leisure subsistence to post-industrial
societies. — Taken from Burch (1970,
p . 64 ) .
savage conclusions from our ethnographic data (Burch
1970, p. 6 8
The evidence of the evolution of.the society from
tribal and rural to urban is the witness of any observer
of present Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabia entering the
industrial age will render parallel and not necessarily
similar causes and effects of industrialization experi^ : enced in the West.
Embree (1939) conducted a pre-war study of Suye
Mura. The study was concerned with a Japanese village surrounded by a society with a determined goal to move toward industrialism. The economy of the village was a mixed barter and moneyed with production* shifting from a major productive unit invested in the family to other broader associations. A study of Gosforth, an English v i l lage,was conducted by Williams (1956). His study .
represents a step closer to accepting the artifacts of industrialization and many of its thought patterns.
Burch (1970, p. 65) offers a n analytical summary of these two studies.
Both Suye.and Gosforth note a marked decline
in leisure time, and, more importantly, a
changed orientation to the social meaning of
Though both societies have more leisure
than did 19th century industrial society, they
have considerably less leisure than Tikopia or
the "proles'' of Imperial. R o m e .
Burch briefly Identified some of the cumulative
human inventions whose convergence trains our peculiar
incapacity with leisure.
In the present Western society, leisure is dif ferently taken more seriously.
It is studied, analyzed,
and planned for.
It has direction,, a beginning and an
e n d .
It is equal to work in importance and w e i g h t .
For the first time in human history leisure
rather than work has become the dominant human
factor which Integrates life . . . to accept
work shifts a whole emphasis.
.In the same source, Overstreet (cited by Gold 1973)
future we shall grow leisure-wise.
The latest thought came to altogether disassoci ate recreation from work.
Recreation should not be.
viewed only as a refreshment of o n e ’s strength and
spirits after work.
There a r e , however, retirees, senior citizens,
the ill and handicapped, and others in our
can no longer be considered solely as a comple- ■ ment to work, but must also be thought of as a ' way of life (Hormachea and Reynolds 1976p p. 4).
Saudi Arabian society has not yet grown work-wise
for it to grow leisure-wise. However, it.is not the
■; : : ; ;
matter whether the emphasis should be on work or leisure»
What should be the concern of planners in Saudi Arabia
is that leisure has always existed and its change of
nature in a developing nation will have a great impact
on the society.
They are at a stage where leisure should
be planned for seriously before the encroachment of
urbanization on the spaces and places of the soul.
Benefits and Contributions of Recreation
Recreation as a means of fulfilling leisure time has numerous benefits and contributions. It is widely recognized as an essential, factor in modern life.
Recreation is a means of counterbalancing, other aspects of livings and its. value to the individual and community .
is due in part to the contribution it makes to other human interests and forces. Recreation could not be viewed in a vacuum. It relates to all aspects of the.
complex unit called "human being.." Butler (19 76,. p .
quotes Gullok as saying:
Human life .is not in fact divided into neat
packages5 known as "work" and "play" or "eco-
is, in fact, for each of us, a seamless w e b .
The intent of public leisure services is to provide oppor^ tunities for satisfying leisure needs for all segments of the population. Although they.are often overlooked, this includes, the needs of special populations within'the
and mentally handicapped, the disabled, and the disad
Claims have been made for recreation as a means
of bringing about many desirable, results to the community.
These results include the reducing of delinquency and
'crime, building and sustaining physical and mental health,
developing character, uplifting moral, and as a means for
education and a tool for bringing community solidarity.
Butler (1976, p. 21) points o u t :
The contributions of recreation to other community
forces, important as they a r e , should be con sidered as- secondary to the chief value of recrea
tion, which lies in its power to enrich people's
Recreation activities are commonly grouped accord
ing to types, such as games and sports, crafts or nature
These types are classified by age, sex, by
space requirements, skill, c ost, seasons, popularity,
number of people taking p a r t .
Indoor activities are
segregated from outdoor according to season and nature
Recreation could be categorized as active,
semi-active and passive, or formal, semi-formal, and
I n formal.
Large numbers of people participate in recreation
to gain satisfactions such as fellowship,, the opportunity
to create3 adventures a sense of achievement, the.enjoy
ment of one's physical, powerss the use of one's mental
powers 3 emotional stimulation, beauty and relaxation.
When a MS.NC develops a recreational program,
general guidelines, as adopted from Butler (1.976, p. 232)
and Gold (1973s p • 236) are of value.
1. Provide the widest possible range of activities
which appeal to the needs, values, and interests handicapped. •
2. Provide equal opportunities for both sexes and
all a g e s .
3. Offer activities affording varying and progres sive degrees of skill and ability.
4. Encourage individuals and groups to expand their
interests and provide their own activities.
5. Involve the active participation of individuals
and community groups in planning the program.
6. Utilize fully and wisely all available community
resources— human and physical.
7 . Participation in recreation activity should be -
free, or if it is necessary to charge fees, they
should be minimal.
Children, senior citizens,
the poor and handicapped should pay no charge for
Duplication of services that could be reached by
residents in or out of the neighborhood should
Following are suggestions for recreation activi ties for the Arabian neighborhood'.
Special, emphasis in recreation facilities is put .
on children’s playgrounds.
The provision of children’s
playgrounds should be of first priority.
If an adult
has adjusted to his environment or if he could seek
recreational opportunities elsewhere outside the neigh
borhood, a child cannot do that in congested urban
environment with no adequate open space.
The experiences of other societies might
prove helpful to direct the thoughts of urban planners
and designers in Saudi Arabia as to designing and facili tating children’s playgrounds.
Philosophy and Trends
It is not restricted
Both ma n and.animal play is provoked by an instinct; they
do it naturally.
Many theories have attempted to explain
play. These explanations are:
1. To discharge excess amounts of energy *
2. T o
fulfill a "need" for relaxation.
3 - To satisfy the imitative instinct.
4. Used as an exercise in restraints.
5. As a training device for future, work.
7. Used as an outlet for harmful impulses.
8. As a form of wlsh-fulfillment.
9. As a form of self-expression.
10. As a' means for education.
The most important factor of play is that' it. is -
cannot be completely and precisely defined, but rather
termed as an idea or expression.
Play is based on the
manipulation of cert ain images, with a special imagina tion of reality.
One must look at the significance of
in play in order to understand play as a .cultural factor in life.
Play can be serious or non-serious.
It can be.
termed beautiful; for example, the rhythm of the human
body in motion.
All play is voluntary activity and can
be deferred or suspended at any time/ The need or desire
for play is only urgent to, the extent that the enjoyment ' or pleasure derived from it makes it a necessity. Play
is never imposed by physical necessity and is done at
Some of the major characteristics of play are:
1. Play is free-form, it is freedom.
One can be
what or whomever one wis h e s .
2. It is not "ordinary" or "real."
Play is pretend
and the person doing the pretending is aware
that the play is pretend and not reality.
3. Play creates order.
Participants in the play
activity must follow certain rules or they will
spoil the game.
Play is pointless.on the surface,
but it is significant.
According to Huizinga (1970, p. 3), play is a
voluntary activity or occupation executed within certain
fixed limits of time and place, according to rules freely
accepted but absolutely binding, having its aim in itself
and accompanied by a feeling of tension, joy, and the
consciousness that it is different from ordinary life.
Play is the way in which intelligence develops.
.It is a child's way of learning and expanding his horizon
of awareness. The psychologist, Piaget (1962), in study ing intelligence, conceived of two complementary pro cesses :
is a special form of adaptation, which consists of ,
continuous creative Interaction between the organism and
Assimilation is the mastery of familiar
or new skills by repetition .and practice.
It is the
complementary to assimilation.
In it the environment
acts upon the organism by evoking a change of response to
cope with the new situation.
Accommodation takes place
when a previously learned response fails to.work in a new
gradually develops his intelligence from the primarily
instinctual responses of infancy to the eventual achieve ment of adult logic and thinking.. Dattner (196 9 , •
pp. 24-30) described the stages of child's development
through age 12. Here is a summary of these stages.
Sensorimotor Phase— Birth to 18-24 months.
1. Instinctual— sucking, grabbing.
2. Learns crying will get response— food, consolation.
3. Learns about space.
5. Practice play.
Expression.of pleasure- at causing an external
event— control of environment to certain extent,
7■ This phase ends with the beginnings of speech.
Preconceptual Phase— 18-24 months to 4 y e ars„
Symbols separate from immediate surrounds— imagination, make believe, pretending.
Imitation— plays at being adult.
Usually in own world, even though other childr socialization comes later.
Intuitive Phase— 4 years to 7-8 years .
Conceptualize, organize— stage of "questioning
Transition between fantasy and reality.
Solitary play moves towards cooperation and
Concrete Operations Phase— 7—8 years to 11-12
Interest in games with rul e s .
Group activities— -team efforts.
Interest in world of concrete objects.
Interest in how things work— -nature.
A child grows physically as well as mentally.
The need for discovery, mystery and adventure are all
part of a good rearing and early childhood.
The lack of
adventure around a child's home only suppresses a child's
Suppression of a child's mental growth
may become permanent, and in later years, cause learning
For this reason, it is important that a
child is exposed to a wide variety of activities and
interactions with peers and the world in general.
Children find a need to make order out of chaos,
just as grown-ups do.
They like to move things around
and place things where they want them.
Children take pride in overcoming risks.
demands courage, endurance and strength. If only child
ren would be allowed to test for themselves their own
abilities, then they would know their limits.
The lack of play areas in .the urban environment and not allowing children to play in the streets or other open spaces contribute to a child's resentment or apathy toward society, which could result in isolation from society and possibly juvenile delinquency or vandalism.
This phenomenon is felt in the United States.
Our current city and suburban environments
may carry the seeds of our own destruction":
resentful'kids take their places in adult
society their underlying hostility to the
city or town' which rejected them will cer tainly be f e l t .
The lack of good play conditions may be only one .
cause contributing to juvenile delinquency and other
problems such as immaturity of adults and lack of
But improving the. environment for child's
play is one method of changing the character of cities
and of society.
Sport was accepted if it served a rational pur
pose, that of recreation necessary for physical efficiency.
But it should also be accepted as a means for spontaneous
expression of free body rhythms.
It should not always
have to be organized and competitive.
The widespread public interest in sports is not
a characteristic of society -in Saudi Arabia.
children develop their sports skills on vacant lands that
are soon to be developed.
After the scale of environment
has become smaller, the lack of space for running, climb
ing and jumping shifts the interest of the majority
toward other activities, except for the selected few who
join school sports programs or join the few private clubs
that could provide the space and expenses.
At the adult
stage, many more people drop completely from sports.
If the environment was sensitive enough, it would have provided open spaces closer to home and not bound by
103 rigid regulations of sports fields. Sports'should not.
stop at a certain age of human development.
The contribution of sports to the well-being of the human being Is' widely recognized, and its importance for young and old should be emphasized. The nature of sports will change as a person grows up. Young people are more active and energetic than older ones; however, sports such as volleyball, jogging, and long-distance walking are enjoyed by older people.
Wheelchair bowling and basketball have made
possible participation by the physically handi
capped, and swimming is enjoyed by the mentally
retarded and the physically handicapped, in cluding the blind (Butler 1976, p. 325) •
..Sports activities that could be practiced at a
neighborhood level are listed below.
those activities which are found only in.the American
culture, and not widely recognized by the Arabian cul ture .
The plays of all primitive people arise out of
superabundance of the joy of life.
It is no more than
natural and inevitable development of a deeply rooted
instinct almost as old as man himself.
music and dancing, has always belonged to the people.
Hollington, (as quoted by Butler 1976, p-.: 338), a special ist in children's drama, says.
The dramatic instinct of the child is very
near the surface— is very f r e e .
this instinct, to provide the child with a
means for self-expression which will not stifle
spontaneity nor thwart personality but will
stimulate the imagination and develop inner
resources— this vital and far reaching.
Drama activities could be simple and spontaneous
or it could be of a more formal nature, including the
production before an audience.
Forms of drama, such as
play with dolls, dressing up-, playing store or house, or
acting out stories are a fundamental part of children's,
play which find expression on the playground.
The stage could consist merely of cretonne hung
on the playground fence to serve as a backdrop and with
portable screens:used for w i n g s .
Storytelling should be
a feature activity of the playground, and the story hour
furnishes the incentive for many drama activities .
Hand puppetry and the marionette theater have
105 become playground, features .
Stage,, puppets 5 and costumes
are made by the children who write the plays which ,are
presented and operate the theater.
Remarkable skill and
ingenuity have been developed in making and using
marionettes— activities which appeal especially to the
older boys and girls.
In some cities > marionette
theaters constructed and operated by playground groups
travel from playground to playground.
In this w a y , many
children have an opportunity to see the plays which have
been worked out on the different grounds and the troupes
gain added experience (Butler 1976, p.. 338) .
Music lasts a lifetime, can take a multitude of
forms (unlike certain games and sports whose practices
are more or less prescribed), is highly adaptable and can
suit any a g e , sex, taste, ability, mood or circumstance.
It can be used with other activities including other per
forming a rts, sports, celebrations , festivals and
pageants. It can be highly informal or organized.
other words, it. is very creative; it helps
the power of expression of people and communities.
In cooperation with the municipality5 schools,
w o men’s clubs and other organizations, garden activities
could be constructed. Services could include the pro vision of land for children's and adult's gardens, leader
ship for gardening programs, the promotion of home
gardens, indoor gardens and terrariums, flower arranging,
provision of knowledge of arid land plants, conservation
of water techniques and the furnishing of s e eds.
A fruit and spice park established by the Metro politan Dade County,. Florida, Park and Recreation Depart
ment > serves as a demonstration area of tropical fruits,
nuts, and spice-producing plants
an information center
on tropical-plant culture is also maintained.
gardens, some of them elevated and planted with flowers
and shrubs having a distinct odor, have been established
for the benefit of the' b l i n d .
A flower and vegetable .
garden in Pontiac, Michigan, has helped mentally disturbed
children at the state hospital "grow out of themselves."
In the same city, gardening is proving a rewarding thera peutic hobby for senior citizens (Butler 1976., p. 364).
Folk dancing contains the very essence of social
group p l a y .
Saudi Arabia has a rich Cultural background
of its own and of the other cultures represented by old
and new immigrants to the country -
Folk dancing displays
a colorful picture of the cultural background of the
society and creates a sense of unity and harmony.
Hobbies could be classified into three types:
those in which knowledge is acquired3 those in which
things are acquired, and thos in which things are created.
Wide range of activities could be listed under
. . . but some hold the opinion that a true
hobby is a personal, intimate matter, capable
of enjoyment by one's self, to be shared only
with kindred souls (Butler 1976, p. 380).
A neighborhood center fosters hobbies among adults pri
marily by helping bring together persons with a common
interest and furnishing a place where they can m e e t ,
and where leadership, instruction and equipment are also
Research in Recreation
This section is concerned with the research back
ground as viewed in the literature of recreation planning.
Various methodologies of research and standards in the
field of recreation planning are' mentioned. Special .
emphasis is placed on Gold's (1973) concept of "the
innovative 'approach" for its relevancy to the merit of -
108 this thesiss and concluding with the relationship be
tween the formulation and methodology of the thesis
with the previously discussed literature.
An outline for an experiment to design a model
for the planning and provision of recreational programs
and facilities is suggested.
This model could include
the provision of services such as medical and postal.
This model suggests basic, planning units where citizens
participate in the planning p rocess.
The most important aspect of this research is the
introduction to the planners in Saudi Arabia the concept
of advocacy planning, which requires citizen participa tion in the planning process.
From the beginning of this century until the
1950s, in countries such as the United States and Britain
and some other European countries, the provision of recre
ation in cities was very much a product of the industrial
The basis for research was not to
bring out social issues of concern but to provide supplies
according to demand according to numbers of people.
In the 1950s and 1970s, the social and behavioral
factors that make up and influence the environment became
the new criteria for planning and design.
Planning for recreation in Saudi Arabia is the
result of a sudden boom in the economy that transformed •
a basically rural society into an urban one with all the.
benefits and disadvantages associated with urban life.
Limited open space and social disorientation to act upon
issues of concern are primary reasons for the lack" of
Recreation research should be
introduced to the Saudi Arabian planner in a context that
fits that environment.
Burton (1971) in his book Experiments in Recrea
tion Research presents a review of recreation research
and outlines a theory of supply and demand for recreation.
The review was not concerned with the nature of recreation
and its distinction from leisure t ime, nor was it con- -
earned with the cultural, social or behavioral aspects
of the needs for certain facilities.
His purpose was to
examine critically techniques of measuring demand for
recreation f a c i l i t i e s t o examine alternative methods of
forecasting recreation demands to be useful for planning,
and to* consider ways of compiling inventories of supplies.
for recreation planning.
approach of supply and demand to recreation planning ■ the "traditional approach." He suggests a new alterna- ■
•hive-,, the "innovative approach," which will be discussed .
does not disqualify the supply and demand approach; it
110 merely considers it as a stage of providing supply, accord
ing to demand— it is an end product of the planning
need as to what the innovative approach is all about.
Demand is essentially a technical economic term
referring to a relationship between quantities and prices.
for the product which is desired.
to the quantity which is actually purchased or consumed
at any given p r i c e .
"Usually non-economists will use the
term demand to mean what is technically consumption"
(Burton 1-971* P* 23). Changes in consumption will re flect, primarily, changes in supply.
The number of people,
who visit a certain park provide the only measure of
demand for that park.
Changes in these numbers will
usually reflect changes in one or more elements of
supply, i.e., improved road access or weather conditions.
If the number of people visiting a park in Area A of a city is greater than the number of visitors to a park in Area B, this does not necessarily imply that the demand of parks is greater in the ..former area. It could equally indicate that the supply of parks is greater in : the former a r e a . -
In making a distinction between demand and con sumption in this way , we are not simply; being .
pedantic. The numbers of users of an urban park
certainly reflect a demand for it = But they also reflect supply (Burton 1971, P- 25).
Burton considers demand for recreation in five
demand, diverted demand, and substitute demand.
demand, for example, is measured by the use which is made
of sports fields in a public park during a season, or by
the number of sports equipment sold in a particular area
throughout a season.
Latent demand is not visible or
apparent, but capable of developing.
It is a demand
which is invisible for such reasons as the non-existence
of facilities rather than the desire or potential for
such facilities to exist.
Induced demand is a demand
which is created as a result of providing a supply of
A supply of new facilities will generate a
new demand in addition to any latent demand which was
Diverted demand occurs as a
result of the provision of new supply which is diverted
from one source of supply to another.
A provision of a
tennis court in a district which was previously without
one will cause some residents of that district to stop
using a tennis court in a nearby district and to use the
new one in their own district instead,. Substitute demand
is similar to diverted demand but refers to completely \
different recreation facilities. For example, the
112 provision of a new tennis court in a district can influ
ence the residents to take up tennis in place of another
activity such as swimming, in which they previously took
p a r t .
Of the five demand.:, c a t e g o r i e s i n d u c e d , diverted and substitute demands are all supply related concepts.
Most recent studies of recreation demands have
been concerned with demand in the popular sense '
(that is consumption); and all have considered
to seek information about latent demands and
about the three categories of supply-related
Burton blames this on the major difficulties inherent in
finding a satisfactory method of assessing such demands.
Pointing out demands by asking people which
activities they would like to take up is insufficient in
situations where money and time are of limited resource. .
Most people might make statements which give no considera
tion to the effect that this will have upon the amount
of money and time which they have available for recrea tion.
Burton cited from the literature two studies which
national recreation survey of 1967 in Britain attempted
to avoid some of the difficulties;.Inherent i n this
approach by asking respondents about both activities:
those which they would like, to take up and those which
113 they positively planned, to take up „ It wa.s felt that the latter question would- provide a much more reasonable .
all activities relating to the question about positive planning than for those which simply asked about likes and dislikes. The household activity system, a pilot investigation by The University of Carolina in 1966, developed a game approach. A time budget diary approach was utilized, thus classifying time according to use.
Each respondent was also asked how he or she would use an additional four hours of leisure time per week if this were available. The approach to respondents was an attempt to provide the investigator with strict time and thus reducing the degree of idealism which respondents could include in the statements about future activities.
Both of these studies were first attempts at
tackling a very complicated problem.
method has received sufficient testing and the
measurement of latent demand remains an open
field for research.
This is even more true of
induced, diverted and substitute demands
By definition, the nature of demand for recrea
tional facilities in the Saudi Arabian neighborhoods is
a latent o n e .
Types of facilities and n o w many to be
provided should be the concern of governmental agencies
capable of supply.. The survey conducted for this thesis
approached the residents of al-Zahra neighborhood— which
doesn’t have any existing facilities— by asking re
immediately "now" or in the "future," thus avoiding the
idealism of "as long as it could be provided, let's have
characteristic of the questionnaire was "double checking."
The questions were repeated in different forms as to give
answers to new questions, where, in fact, the answers were
used to double check the consciousness of the respondent
for being consistent in answering the questions with an
actual need in mind.
However, the reason for the survey
is not to measure supply and demand; it. is the step before
The survey is concerned about pointing out that
there is a latent demand for facilities.
aware of this fact and necessary measures should be con-
sidered to study the possible ways of providing for this
Recreation planning can be manifested, generally,
in two ways of thought.
On the one hand, planning could
The policy makers' can determine and
provide recreation facilities of a kind which it thought
that the population' ought to have.- On the other hand,
it can be directed towards the provision of those facili
both thoughts should be utilized in Saudi A r a b i a T h e r e
are basic needs that every neighborhood should have.
These needs should be expressed in. broader terms for each
The unique demands of each neighborhood
could be deducted from various data and information ob tained not directly from the residents,, but by observa
tion, utilization of data not intended for recreation such
as the socioeconomic surveys, and other data from the
department of statistics.
More detailed information about
the nature and layout of facilities could be obtained from
(19.71 j pp. 34-62) categorized the methods
of collecting data for recreation into'six met h o d s :
interview surveys, self-administered, particularly postal
surveys; observations; documents which have been compiled
for purposes other than immediate ones for which it is
intended to use them; physical evidence; and mechanical
and electronic devices.
As yet, by and large, planners are not able to make informed judgments about what facilities to provide.
Virtually no recent studies have attempted to
formulate criteria based upon the finding of
research, which planners and.Others can utilize
in the formulation and implementation of plans
(Burton 1971,. p. 34). .
In reviewing recreation research, Burton found that too often the objectives of recreation studies .have been
expressed In very broad and general terms— such as to provide detailed information on the use of (demand for) recreation facilities which will serve as a basis for
116 planning. He suggests that perhaps there is a need to
devote less, attention to collection of data and more
attention to improvement in the use that can be made of
data in the formulation of policies and plans.
an even greater need to systemize methods of collecting
theory for the provision of recreation facilities.
"theory" as called in the book by Burton (1971, pp..
317-354), is a series of models which are intended for
the use of local authorities and other bodies' wishing to
provide recreational facilities "as a basis for determin
ing the optimum location of a proposed new facility of a
The unappropriateness of this "theory" to the
Arabian neighborhood is obvious.
Methods of collecting
data were designed for a lifestyle of urban Western
society— the. dependence on existing facilities as a
measure for use.
In Saudi Arabia, most facilities to be
introduced are totally new to the environment. .
fore, there is a need for measuring attitudes and future ■
trends before initiating the. supply of any facility
Some of Burton's models could be used in Saudi Arabia to
measure demand and provide supply at the few existing
117 large-scale recreational and service facilities, utiliz
ing techniques of formulation questionnaires and
collecting data, congruent with the existing life pattern.
Burton's "theory" stops short of recognizing the cultural
aspects and trends of a given population.
tell us the number of people using a certain facility
but it does not tell us what the rest of the population
does or whether they have in mind a totally different
Gold (1973) argues that the past and present planning efforts may be inadequate or ineffective in some respects, especially with the recreation problems of the inner city and other congested urban locations.
One relatively unexplored area is the residential
environment's potential for providing leisure
opportunities for its lack of sophistication or
study of urban recreation planning.
evidence, to suggest that the residents of most
cities have not been able to communicate their
outdoor recreation preferences to the planner
and decision-maker.and when preferences have
been expressed, there is no sensitive technique
for translating them into opportunities (Gold
He argues that the "traditional eoncepts" in recreation ’ ment per a certain number of people have proven unsound and that an alternative is needed to detail a national
.perspective on .recreation planning. Urban recreation
should be looked at as a human experience, for the well being of the users. .
A national perspective is needed because there is
nothing in the literature or practice to indicate a sig nificant geographic difference in the definition of '
problems or techniques commonly associated with urban
This argument could also apply to
regional and local areas where there is: no distinction
in the magnitude and approaches to the recreation problem.
Even though Gold (1973) is concerned with urban
America or the 24'3 metropolitan areas of 50,000 or more
population (primarily with the central and inner city),
the principles, methodology and approach he described can
also apply to suburban areas and small communities.
This study, is concerned with recreation in general
(indoor and outdoor); however. Gold's discussion of out
door recreation should open new avenues to deal with
urban recreation planning in its general context.
Outdoor recreation as an activity focusing on
time, space and cultural aspects are described with
reference to the planning for and use of a neighborhood
park or playground.
The neighborhood park or playground
is analyzed from its traditional orientation toward
children to its.possible present and future role as a
social: and leisure focus. ■
In Gold's,(1973) book, the problem is presented
by the fundamental question: How can the planning process
be more responsive to the outdoor recreation objectives
from four planes: description, relevance, relationships
and research. -
A growing concern of recreation planning is the
p a s t , present and future role of recreation standards in
the planning process.
The traditional role of allocating
public land, facilities and progr ans is challenged in
light of new planning concepts, methodologies and tech niques. '
Planning and behavioral science fields have ex
pressed concern over the use of arbitrary standards for
Traditional recreation standards could be
utilized as guidelines,. not end products for planning.
The arbitrary practice of enumerating as many
facilities or areas per capita (i.e., 10 acres/
1,000 persons of open space) is a hazardous
planning technique, yet it persists for lack
of an alternative.
Mounting evidence indicates
that arbitrary recreation standards represent
inadequate indicators of demand or needs and
the capability of the public sector to produce
Standards expressed as so many acres per 1000
do not discriminate among communities in terms
of varying propensities for recreation consump tion. Differences among communities i n :terms .
of demographic and socioeconomic characteristics
produce quite different patterns of recreation
The traditional simplistic standards approach to
urban recreation planning has proved irrelevant because
of a growing failure, among single-function planners to
relate to the comprehensive planning process.
at the metropolitan level, where complexity of government
demands increased rationality for allocating scarce
resources to competing needs, recreation planners should
seek methods, to relate themselves to the comprehensive
planning process with a better awareness of government
objectives and resource restraints.-
Other arguments against the arbitrary use of
recreation standards, reflect a "requirement approach" to
resource allocation which is concerned with trade-offs
involved where an "optimum" output for outdoor recreation
may involve serious opportunity costs for other public
services such as education.
Any incremental expenditure
for. one denies that much for all others.
Arguments against the arbitrary standards approach
has been voiced by human ecologists, sociologists and
political scientists. The indictment seems c l ear.
theless, alternatives have yet to be conceptualized and
Despite'these arguments, there is a new and more -
significant role which standards can assume in the
planning process. The growing trend toward quantification
of social values's a system approach to planning and the
"measurement explosion" generated by new techniques such
as planning programming-budgeting systems (PPBS), project
a revised and critical role for recreation-standards in
the planning process.
Gold (19733 pp. 186-227) presented the traditional
approach and the innovative approach to urban outdoor
recreation planning, then he provided a comparison of
Prior to 1962, there had been no attempt to ques
tion or challenge the traditional approach to urban
Planning was characterized by an
arbitrary, intuitive and relatively absolute approach
which does little to acknowledge or be responsive to
community goals and objectives, user preference, citizen .
participation in the planning process or cha n g e .
.classification of areas projecting a range of facilities , oriented toward specific age groups, activities or geo graphic areas is m a d e .
The usual hierarchy ranges from
the neighborhood tot-lot to a.regional recreational a r e a .
Most classification tends to separate areas by form a n d .
function and isolate rather than integrate them with the
It also separates age groups 3 user groups
and activities by design3 program and scheduling.
classification, each type of area is subjected to a series
of standards, locational concepts and facility require^
m e n t s .
Once the amount of area needed and the location
are determined, a detailed site plan Is prepared to i n d i - '
cate placement of equipment or layout of areas, for various
activities. Clegg (cited by Gold
the principles of these plans as:
1. To get the maximum use from the land available.
2. To produce an attractive playground viewed from within and without.
To simplify the problems of supervision and
To prevent accidents, by careful segregation of
5. To keep operating cost low.
6. To keep original construction cost low.
Gold (1973, pp. 190-191)- states that:
self-righteous approach to planning which usually
exhibits a conspicuous lack of citizen involve
ment , knowledge of user behavior, community
goals or objectives and a narrow view of who is
to do the planning)
The post-ORRRC Report is characterized by a re liance on the previous concepts and techniques with -
123 several new additions.
Recreation is visualized as an
"experience" instead of an activity.
There was an
integration rather than a separation of form and.function
of recreation areas. Areas began to be viewed as com ponents of a "system."
The concept of government
responsibilities for different types of recreation became
A clear distinction was made between a "user"
and "resource" oriented type of area which was related
to administrative responsibility.
The Innovative Approach . . .
The emphasis for the innovative approach is. on experimentation, demonstration and citizen participation.
Its success or failure is still to-be proven by actual rather than hypothetical field studies. Gold (1973> p. 208) summarizes the concept as follows:
Outdoor recreation planning at the neighborhood
level is an incremental process for the defermen
tation of opportunities based on the expressed
goals and objectives of residents.
tion of public resources for outdoor recreation
of resident values•
These values are expressed
in the opportunities, space standards and priori
ties selected from alternatives by a representative
body of the residents or their advocate. .
Davidoff (cited by Gold 1973, P • 209)V -
Planners should be able to engage in the politi
cal process as advocates of the interests both
of government and of such other groups, organiza
tions, or individuals concerned with proposing
policies for the future development of the com munity .
The process of the .innovative approach is incre
mental for planning and implementation with a normal time
horizon for no longer than two years from the beginning
to the end of one cycle.
Recreation planning should begin with human need,
which is determined by advocacy planning, instead of
starting with conventional facilities for the formulation
of goals and objectives.
Gold (1973s p . 211) quotes
Satterthwaite as saying, "The activity allocation should.
be the end product of the planning process."
The difference between the traditional, concept
and the innovative concept is in the emphasis in the new .
concept on alternatives, citizen participation and revi sion of values and needs. Also, the difference is i
apparent in the change between supplier and resident
standards where the traditional concept takes standards
as the criteria for supply rather than an end product.
The previous examples of research techniques as
attempted to be utilized in the United States and Britain
did not give us a concrete approach to solving the
recreational problems of Saudi Arabia.
were developed for Western socieities at an advanced
stage of.development comparing to Saudi Arabia that is
just beginning its urban development.
Even in Western
societies, those techniques are still to be tested.
Where does Saudi Arabia begin its planning and
programming for recreation?
Review in methodology of
research open the road for the beginning with broad and
necessary basic steps.
Even though we cannot adopt•the
Complete methodology of the innovative approach for
reasons cited, previously3 this approach is the closest
in providing the. desired guidelines for starting the
Planning is viewed not as an end in itself.
It . *
is one positive force capable of helping to improve the
quality of life and environment in urban Saudi.Arabia.
The scale and character of this urbanization involves a
degree"of social interaction and technological complexity
never before experienced.
Any perspective of present
and future should acknowledge complexity and scarcity as
a realistic part of urban living in the 197.0s.
issues of who should make the value judgments to cope
with social and technological change, and how, when and
Conflicts generally associated with the
planning process stem from the different values and ob- .
j"ectives of Institutions in regard to the "public inter-
Although most will agree on such ends as "survival
and quality of the environment," each institution may • have different means of reaching those ends..
Planning is a continuous process of change,
challenge and response to m a n ’s goals, values and n e eds.
Gold (19735 pp. 119-120,) outlines the purpose and objec tives of planning as follows:
I f Meet events that man expects to happ e n .
2. Accomplish things that he wants to h a p p e n .
3. Avoid or prevent things that he does not want
to happen. .
Obj ectives —
Improve the physical environment of the community
to make the community more functional, s a f e ,
interesting, exciting and efficient.
2. Promote the "public interest."
3. Inject long-range considerations into the de termination of ■short-range decisions.
4. Bring professional and technical knowledge to
bear on the political decisions concerning the
social, economic and physical development of the
5• Prompt and facilitate'effective cooperation and .
Coordination between all concerned with community
7 ° Identify maj or. opportunities and potentials .
Stimulate citizen participation in the planning
9. Develop and interpret social and economic indi cators which can help measure change.
Help formulate alternative goals and objectives
which can become the basis of action-oriented
The aforementioned objectives provide guidelines
for the comprehensive plan to break down the centrality
of planning and implementation of plans into smaller
units of effective caliber.
As was previously, indicated,
planning authorities.emphasized community and citizen
participation in the planning process.
This could only
be achieved if the planning area was broken into smaller
and reachable population groups called a neighborhood
or community. ,
A planning approach for the Saudi Arabian neigh borhoods is .outlined as follows;
1. Alternative or policy types of plans.
2. A continuous planning and review process.
3. A decentralized planning function.
Flexible planning units based on natural and
5 o Quality over quantity„
Social over physical and economic considerations.
Conservation over exploitation of human, and
A recreation movement is bound to happen in Saudi
Planning, policies are required at the national
level as well as the neighborhood level.
is suggested to establish a model to draw policies and
provide facilities not only for the neighborhood or
communitys but also for the city, the region and the
An Experimental Planning Approach
In order to develop a model for the provision of
community recreation policies and facilities, extensive
research is required because there is no information
available and most data are scattered in separate govern mental agencies.
Following are guidelines for planning
in order to achieve the desired models.
The Community: The city to be divided into small
sented by subcommittees that have direct contact with
the population it served.
people to the larger governmental agencies, through
the•mother committee which represents the whole city.
cities in a regioncoordinate planning effort at the .
regional level through a supreme committee.
findings and recommendations to a central governmental
agency that coordinates studies and programs between
the various regions at a national level. , -
The subcommittee, committee, supreme commitee and
agency will develop a separate model.
These models are
interrelated and depend oh each other's findings.
Figure 6 illustrates this hierarchy.
For establishing the model, the agency encompasses
the supreme committee, the committee and the subcommittee.
The supreme committee encompasses the committee and
The committeee encompasses the subcommittee
and the subcommittee encompasses the population of a
In the cities of Saudi Arabia, socioeconomic .
surveys, comprehensive plans and observations, will pro vide data to break down the city into planning units.
S U B
C O M M IT T E E
C O M M IT T E E
SUPREME C O M M IT T E E
Hierarchy of planning models for Saudi
The planning units will differ in their characteristics
demographically3 socially, economically and physically.
These factors should be arranged on a scale developed
by the combined efforts of statisticians, economists >
sociologists, architects, and landscape architects under
the direction of an urban p lanner.
The function of the
scale is to provide community types (planning units) in
a city (see Figure 7)•
Ideally, every planning unit should be researched,
but this is impracticable, especially for the purpose of
To simplify the effort, similar- units'
will be grouped together to provide "community types."
In reality, community types are not mutually exclusive
but will be considered so f o r :the purpose of a model.
Among similar planning units "community type," the most
representative one or two will be researched.
So, if the
scale provided three or four different "community types,"
each consisting of five to ten planning units, only two
or three planning- units according to resources will be
selected for the model at the city scale, thus providing us with a unified scheme for establishing general guide lines for a city model.
In a region, representative cities will-be selected.
Common characteristics of their individual models will be'
combined .to conceive a regional model. Common .
unit unit unit
TYPE 1 MODEL unit unit
TYPE 2 M O DEL
| unit | | unit | | unit
TY P E 3 M O DEL
Other c itv m odels
C IT Y
M O DEL
Other e itv m odels o th e r re g io n a l m odels
MODEL o th e r re g io n a l m o d els
Relationships between planning models for
characteristics„of required models will provide the basis
for a national m o d e l .
Objectives of Models
Community L e vel.
Draw and recommend a community
implementing the community policy and represent the
community at the community and city levels.
City L e vel.
Draw and recommend a city policy for
Provide resources for implementing
the city policy.
Represent the community at the city and
Regional L e v e l .
To draw and recommend a regional
policy for recreation planning.
Provide resources for
implementing the regional policy. Represent the com munity at the regional and national levels.
National L e v e l .
To draw and recommend a national
policy for recreation planning.
Provide resources for
implementing the national policy.
REpresent the community
at the national government.
Functions of Models
Coordination between public sector and govern-. /
m e n t .
2. Coordination between public sector and private
Unifying goals that concern several governmental
agencies that work separately, i.e., land acquisi
tion for recreation facilities, or putting to-
that could be provided by different governmental
Providing a framework for a unified design scheme
thus eliminating scattered individual efforts
that might appear chaotic and out of context with
each other and the environment they serve.
5. Point out neighborhood, city, regional and
national trends, requirements and different needs
6. Relate these trends to the comprehensive plans.
7. Suggest and supervise studies to measure atti tudes, trends, supply and demand.
8. Allow a direct participation by the citizens in
the planning process.
.9. Present to a community experiences of other com munities .
10.' Introduce new ideas and concepts not known to the
11.' Provide standards for design.
T h e .hierarchy of models necessitate
different techniques for collecting and analyzing data. -
Research to be conducted in three fashions are:, from
existing records, utilizing surveys 5 or setting up- an
experiment and observing it.
In establishing MSNC, most
of the responsibility of research falls under the city
government represented by the "committee model." Sub
committees should not be burdened with the research
processs just the initiation of needs to be researched,
and to help gather data.
Researches at the community
level will, provide the city with recommendations and
standard at the city level. These researches will pro
vide the "supreme committee" a basis for a regional
The "agency" needs this finding of the "supreme
committee" to formulate a national policy.
The city committee should include a recreational
planner3 an urban planner, a landscape architect, a
sociologist, a psychologist and an economist.
Collecting data and analysis techniques were ex tracted in part from Gold .(1973a P • 214).
Statistical information from the Ministry- of
2. Statistical data from health agencies and hospi tals . ‘ -
Statistical data from the General Presidency of
Youth Welfare. ,
4. Statistical data from the Office of Town Planning.
5• Surveys to determine why people are not using
existing parks, free clinics and social welfare
6. Surveys to study patterns of leisure time.
7. Photographic time-sequence analysis of both
public recreation areas and streets to record
u s e p r o b l e m s , and potentials.
8. Surveys .of children and teenagers to find out
their specific desires, values and perception of
things, activities and the environment.
9 > Designing survey forms which utilize graphic symbols instead of complicated words and instruc tions .
10. Closing of streets, detouring pedestrian or recreationuse and non-use.
11. Aerial photography to inventory land forms 5 vege
tation, circulation.and recreational use patterns
of given areas or the entire planning u n i t .
12. Surveys of and by school, children to identify
recreational problems and potentials, preference
of non-users, parental goals., objectives and
values with regard to leisure5 recreation and other community needs and wants.
Selection of Alternatives-.
Once a neighborhood's
goals and objectives are expressed, formulated and accept
ed by the majority of residents, alternative means of
reaching them becomes the next step. Gold (1973) sug
gests three devices: (1) recreation opportunity index
or social indicator, (2) representative space standard,
and (3) recreation resource allocation.
Producing and evaluating a recreationand service
program are recommended by public opinion and preference.
The committee at city level should also evaluate pro grams .
Figure 8 illustrates a process by which supply
and demand for programs and facilities are m e t .
The subcommittee analyzes programs and facilities
and decides which ones could be provided by the community
itself and those to be presented to the committee at the
The committee will decide on two types of
provisions: those that could be supplied by city govern
mental agencies such as the municipality or the office of
town planning, and those that should be obtained from
Most facilities, will be provided by
agencies at the city .level.
% regional agency anency regional.
G O V E R N M E N T
S U B C O M M I T T E E
PRI VAT E
C O M M U N IT Y
D E M A N D
Supply and demand for neighborhood facilities
in Saudi Arabia.
Figure 8 is divided- into four u n i t s : community,
government, subcommittee and private business.. The
hatched line divides the chart into demand and supply
(mainly facilities). Weight of lines indicates impor tance .
Thick lines have more importance than thin lines.
The community demands much more than it supplies.
government supplies more than it demands.
representatives are more responsible in supply at the
city level, followed respectively by regional and national
Private business should not demand, but it could
supply at a small scale.
From the suggested experiment, one notices the
special emphasis upon the city to conduct most of the
research and provide facilities and programs.
The pri mary concern of the committee at the city level is two fold.
First, a policy needed to be formulated that set
out the limits of what a multi-service neighborhood
center would and/or (by implication of omission) would not
do; moreover,,the<policy-can, specify whatever priorities
the city might wish to render to particular groups of
residents, particular programs, or particular areas of
the city. Finally, the policy needs to set out the ob jectives of the MSNC program.
The second step is to
translate the policy into guidelines for staff ..and ad ministrators to use in considering new. centers.
In the planning process 5 advocacy planning Is the
To test the concept of advocacy planning, a
planning unit was chosen in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, from
the existing site plan of the city of Riyadh.
was conducted to measure the reaction of the residents
toward establishing a multi-service neighborhood center.
The following three chapters illustrate this study.
THE RESEARCH PROBLEM
Utilizing the concept of advocacy planning, this
study was designed to measure the reaction of the resi
dents of al-Zahra neighborhood, a suburb of- Riyadh, Saudi
Arabia, to the possibility of establishing a m u l t i - .
service neighborhood center (MSNC) and the choice of
facilities needed by the community.
This study also
recorded the frequency of choices towards facilities and
activities, the separation or grouping of facilities for
both sexes. Variables of the study were age, sex, mari tal status and number of children in a household.
Physical and Social Setting of
The city of Riyadh is divided into 31 districts,
each called .
For the purpose of this study, these
districts are called neighborhoods or communities.
Al-Zahra neighborhood is a suburb located on the.north eastern fringe of the city.
Most of the population
belongs to the middle- to upper-middle and upper-income
It is mainly a family community with one or
142 story single™ and multi-family dwellings.
activities occur on the main thoroughfares surrounding
the neighborhood (see m a p 3 Figure 1 in pocket).
the neighborhood there are a few commercial businesses
occupying buildings that were designed as villas or apart ment buildings, Apartment occupancy is not a character istic of Saudi Arabian lifestyle in Riyadh. There are .
three apartment buildings in the area studied which are
occupied mostly by non-Saudi or transient young Saudi
Unlike American lifestyle, Saudi young men and
women over 18 years of age do not live outside the family
h o m e .
Therefore, one could easily characterize the life style of most Arabian neighborhoods as family dominated,and consisting of extended families.
As will be mentioned in the Selection of Sample,
only approximately one-half of the neighborhood was sur neighborhood.
Services in the neithborhood consist of a.Mosque
located on Jareer Boulevard, a private hospital "al-
Watani," two hairstyle shops for women, a bookstore, a
bakery, and several convenience variety stores .
station, a post office and semi-rundown free clinic
as well as a suburban market that constitutes small
variety and service shops are located in the adjacent
neighborhood of al-Malaz.
The recreational facilities
in the neighborhood are non-existent save for a small
143 private "Karate" c l u b . No parks or open spaces are de signed for the residents.
Many houses have their little
private gardens that could not be seen from the streets
due to wall fences of about eight f e e t .
environment is stark.
Street furniture does not exist
except for street lights of scale fit for major thorough fares rather than a residential scale. Trees and tele-' , phone booths do not exist. A girl's high school and .
college are in the neighborhood.
Due to the educational
and commercial institutesj the parking problem is almost
insurmountable in some areas of the neighborhood.
1978 and .the. final Riyadh mashervplan are not available,
there are no population estimates at hand for Riyadh's
districts. The socioeconomic survey of 1977 grouped the .
population of Riyadh according to 20 sectors .
sectors were combined into six planning zones.
planning zones were relatively homogeneous from the
point of view of built-up area, population density of
residential areas, and continuity.
Al-Zahra neighborhood is located in Zone 5.. T h e ■
average density of Zone 5 is 75 inhabitant per hectare
(2.471 acre) (MOMRA Report 3, 19779,PP- 16-2.5). Taking
the density figure as
basiss a population estimate at
the section of al-Zahra neighborhood surveyed,could be
The area surveyed is approximately 27 +
square hectares, therefore, the population is approxi mately 2000 +■.
The population is mostly literate except
for the elderly.
This neighborhood does not reflect an average
sample of the Saudi citizens, however, in an advancing
country towards education, ■•technology and urbanization.
This neighborhood might serve as a milieu for testing
new ideas before they are shaped to involve a large seg ment of the society with its diverse economic and educa tional levels and ' traditional backgrounds .
Significance of Study Proposal
The spatial community is not a product of mere
ideology or aesthetics; it is the physical expression
of ".basic social needs (Wingo 1970, pp. 70-71) ♦
planning the physical environment with the cultural
Values, and trends in mind.
The urban settlements of
Saudi,Arabia are growing rapidly due to the increase .
cation networks,. variety in consumer items, education and
the greater interaction with other societies have enabled
Saudi Arabia to become aware of the need for planning in
the urban setting.
These factors have brought new ideas
to the people and the changing lifestyle is apparent to
any observer of the Saudi Arabian society, thus necessi
tating another look at the urban environment from both
the physical and the social aspects.
An understanding of
community needs and the form by which these needs are to
be met is an integral part of the planning process if the
planner is to achieve a successful design.
could commit gross errors by not examining the validity
of the concepts proposed to the community.
This study is an attempt to include the people as
participants in shaping their environment.
It is only a
start towards a new concept in design for the Saudi
Limitation, of the Study i. In research such as this o n e , the personal inter
view is probably the best technique, to obtain
fresh and comprehensive data; however, for cul
tural r e a s o n , i t might be difficult in Saudi
Arabia for a man to interview women face to face
with whom he does not. have a family relationship.
The interviewing process could be done in.the
the case of women If their husband or head of the
household is present during the interview.
could be determined from the pilot s t u d y .
this particular case, distributing questionnaires
There exists a high degree of illiteracy among
the elderly in Saudi Arabia; therefore, these
people must be interviewed.
If .1 couldn't reach
them, a member of their family might assist them
in their answers to be recorded on the question naire sheet.
The following research questions which gave order
and direction to the study were examined. ■
Is there a need for a multi-service neighborhood
center in al-Zahra neighborhood?
2. How do respondents spend their leisure time?
What is the hierarchy of recreational activities
that respondents chose,'"Were they to become
What is the hierarchy of sport activities
that respondents chose the most?
What is the hierarchy of fine art activities
that respondents chose the most?
147 o. What is the hierarchy of performing art
activities that respondents choose'-the most?
What is the hierarchy of thinking and fun
games that respondents choose the most?
4.. Where would the center be located in relation to
5 - Who would administer the center?
Would males and females be grouped in one center
or would there be two separate centers?
Would children's playgrounds' be attached to the
men's or women's facilities?
What is the hierarchy of services (other than
recreational) to be included in the center?
9. What time would the center be most used?
What days of the week the center would be
used the most?
b . What time of day is the center used the most?
A research of this nature was unique to the Saudi
There are no multi—service neigh
borhood centers existent in the format suggested in this
research and there are no researches of this nature at a
city or neighborhood level to serve as a model .or as a
basis for this research.
Designing a model for the
research required the efforts of many individuals in
Tucson and in Saudi Arabia, as' well as consultation with
varied literature material pertaining to this subject
of designing questionnaires, collecting and analysing
d a t a .
In this chapter, an attempt is made to explain how
a •researcher could go about designing a questionnaire collecting data in a developing country for the purpose of involving a community in decision mak i n g .
In collaboration with my graduate advisory com
mittee, several approaches to the problem were discussed
including the idea of involving in the study married
Saudi Arabian students and their families in Tucson for
enlightenment and suggestions.
Since the concept of multi-service neighborhood
centers is new to Saudi Arabia, several approaches were
Approaching,the Residents with the
Concept of MSNC
As to the procedure by which to present the questions, there were three approaches.
neighborhood center is without mentioning specific
facilities, then ask what type of facilities and
services the respondent recommends if he/she
agrees on the concept.
If the person is not able
149 to think of a wide range of facilities or activi
ties, then proceed to show them the listed
facilities and activities.
The advantage of this method is that the re
spondents are not locked into a limited set of
the disadvantage of this
method lies, with the fact that many of the faclli
ties which constitute the multi-service neighbor
Define a multi-service neighborhood center and
explain the facilities that could constitute its
This would be like giving the respon
dents an inventory of facilities and allowing
them to choose from it and add to it.
After consulting with several Saudi Arabian
Students at The University of Arizona in Tucson
on how to proceed with presenting the multi-
service neighborhood concept, they indicated that
it would be better i.f the concept was explained
and presented to the people with possible
facilities:, then ask them about their preferences
and if they wanted to include any additional
Observe what are the non-existing recreational
and service facilities, then present these
' ■ ; .
facilities in the questionnaire or interviewing■
procedure to determine which of these facilities
are needed in the neighborhood.
After this is
completed5 one could present the concept of the
multi-service neighborhood center and ask which
of the chosen facilities could be grouped
Then ask the respondents to rank the
facilities according to importance to the neigh borhood (see Questionnaire,. Appendix B) .
After conducting a pilot study, a pre-test o'f
question techniques on 20-30 individuals provided a great
help in changing the nature of the questions.
the pre-test should be done under similar circumstances
as the original sample.
A. pre-test, on some married Saudi
Arabian students residing in Tucson has shed some light
in changing the nature of the questions.
Ranking spondents may have difficulty ranking.
Which of these services is most important of all?
§ 1 . )
Which is next to most important?
# 2 . )
To clear up ranking confusions, the facilities
were designated as to their importance in terms of time.
The question was asked whether the facility should be
151 established now or in the future.
Translating the questionnaire with adequate
definitions for the concept of multi-service neighborhood
centers and the type of facilities are not well under stood by. the Arabian culture.
Translation took place by the re-translation
Once the questions have been constructed in
Arabic, they were translated back into English, improved
upon, and then re-translated into Arabic.
was then submitted to several Arabian students here in
Tucson and to a pilot study group from al-Malaz to de
termine whether the questions can be easily read and
final version was then written in Arabic
and later translated into English.
Further Development of the Questionnaire
in Saudi Arabia
One of the most responsive and receptive govern
mental agencies contacted while in Riyadh was the General
Presidency of Youth Welfare under the Ministry of Labor
and Social Affairs.
They offered valuable help through
their Department of Statistics.
Suroor Moubarak of the
Department of Statistics and the researcher have reshaped
the questionnaire format through several sessions so it
can be easily understood by the average resident and, at
the same time, expanded the recreational activities
into many sports.
We also introduced the concept of how
leisure time was spent as a basis for measuring the
exigency of public recreation facilities.
Letters, of Recommendation
Letters of recommendation from the Saudi Arabian
Educational Mission and The University of Arizona,.ex
plaining the legitimacy and nature of this study, helped
introduce the research to several governmental agencies
contacted by the researcher.
Letters from the Office
of City Planning, the City Municipality, and the General
Presidency of Youth Welfare helped to get recommendation
from the Ministry of the Interior, which referred the
researcher to the General Department of Statistics to
fully examine the contents of the questionnaire before
being released in the neighborhood. After minor sugges tions, the Department of Statistics approved the ques tionnaire (see Appendix C).
Selection of Sample
Since the theme of this study is advocacy planning
at a neighborhood level,,it was desirable to involve the
different age groups, setting the minimum age at 15,
where the person is able to read, comprehend and answer
153 the questionnaire.
The questionnaire was intended for
males and females and residents of different occupations.
There were no statistical information available
regarding this neighborhood.
Street layouts and'density
figures were also unavailable by either the municipality
or the Office of City Planning,
A map of the city of
Riyadh, showing the block land divisions, was found at a
later stage from a Swedish surveying firm.
The telephone directory was incomplete as a re
liable source for determining the number of residences.
This area of. al-Zahra neighborhood, as designated by this
name, is actually constituted of two different sections
divided by a major thoroughfare of 60th Street.
section west of 60th Street is older and in some areas
further west, yielding to commercial establishments.
section east of 60th Street is new and mainly residential,
with a few exceptions of private business offices,. The •
section east of 60th Street is 11 blocks north-south and
A survey was conducted on foot to familiarize
the researcher with the neighborhood components.
area is divided into four sections, o r .quarters.
section was taken block by block.
On each block, at
least two households were given the questionnaire.
researcher asked for the head of the household, introduced
himself and the nature of the research, then asked about
the number of people 15 years of age and over who live in
the house for distribution of the questionnaire if there
is a desire to participate in the study.
proceeded to the next house, then the next b l o c k .
Apartment building residents and business estab lishments were excluded from the study.
apartment buildings were usually transients in this
The survey took place during the early part
of the evening to assure the presence of the head of the
To increase the number of respondents with less
effort, members of the researcher’s family assisted in
distributing some of the questionnaires.
Since my sister
teaches at the elementary girls’ school in the neighbor
hood, she distributed some questionnaires to the other
teachers who live in the neighborhood, provoding that I
h a d n ’t reached their family during the field survey to
My other sister was attending the
•assisted in distributing some questionnaires to the women
who live in the neighborhood who, in turn, would distrib ute the questionnaires to their families. •
The instrument used to collect data is the
questionnaire developed by the author with the contribu tion of the Division of Statistics in the General Presi
dency of Youth Welfare. The instrument was used to
collect data to answer the research questions (see Research
Questions). The instrument consists of three parts: •
1. Test of percentages.
2. Hierarchy of the needed activities or facilities.
3. Respondents1 suggestions.
The questionnaires were given in the Arabic lan
guage with an introduction to the nature of the research.
For eliminating doubts and uneasiness on the part of the
respondents3 it was mentioned in the introductory pages
that this study is supported by Program in Landscape
Architecturej School of Renewable Natural Resources3 the
Saudi Arabian Educational Mission in the United States;
the Presidency of Youth Welfare, Office of City Planning, • the City Municipality, the General Department of Sta
tistics, and the Ministry of the Interior in Saudi Arabia.
Letters of recommendation were available with the
The procedure for distributing and collecting the
questionnaires was done in such a way as to give the re spondents time to think about the questions, answer them
156 or reject them If they so desired.
The researcher’s home
phone was provided which served two main purposes: it
helped those who had any further questions or clarifica
tions and, on the other.hand, it helped save embarrassment
for those who did not want to participate but could not
understand the nature of the study and did not want to
express an open rejection to the study.
They could always
say: we will call you later to pick up the questionnaires.
The questionnaires were distributed with ease.
The residents showed great interest and response.. The
questionnaires were collected and the data were later key
punched at the University of Arizona Computer Center.
Treatment of Data
The purpose of this study was to use the concept
of advocacy planning to test the reaction of the resi
dents of al-Zahra neighborhood, a suburb of the city of
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, towards establishing a multi-service
neighborhood center (MSNC) and to determine the recrea-
tiohal and service facilities needed by the community to-
be included in this center. Questionnaires were distrib uted and collected in al-Zahra neighborhood.
key punched and submitted to the University of Arizona Com-
.puter Center utilizing the Statistical Package for the
Social Sciences (SPSS) (Nie et al, 1975) for analysis. Data
were organized to provide percentages of each activity or
facility occurrences to determine its significance for
inclusion in the MSNC concept.
were cross-tabulated with the demographic variables
according to sex, age, marital status, occupation, and
having children under 12 years of age.
The data from the test of percentages on the
number of agreements or choice on each activity or
' faciloty enabled the researcher to determine those activi ties needed by the community and their hierarchy of im portance.
In all cases, the chi-square with .05 level of
significance was set to m e a s u r e 'significant differences
in choices among respondents according to demographic
RESULTS AND FINDINGS
The characteristics of the population which par-
ticioated in this study3 the research questions and the
collection.of data in support of the research questions • are presented in this chapter. Respondents' suggestions, •
conclusion, recommendations and suggestions for future,
research are also presented.
The characteristics of respondents are presented
in the following categories: Sex (male, female). Occupation
(students, employees, own business, or housewives), A g e ,
Marital Status and Having Children Under 12 Years of Age.
The characteristics distribution among the 203 respondents
is indicated in Table 6.
This table showed that a full
range of population has participated in the study, giving
it a factual representation of the opinions of the neigh borhood residents
In a country where open mixing of the sexes still
is socially unaccepted (see Chapter 2, Sexual Modesty), it
was a valuable opportunity to have had 49.3 percent of
Table 6... Distribution of respondents by characteristics.
Number Percent Characteristics
S e x :
Own business .
29 . 6
' respondents to be females.
This fact gave the study
findings equal weight among the sexes, thus making it
less speculative and more factual to draw conclusions'
and set forth recommendations regarding male and female
Two hundred thirty questionnaires were distributed
in the neighborhood; 208 residents responded to the
questionnaires. Five questionnaires were rejected be cause they were incomplete; therefore, the total popula
tion included in this study who completed answering the
questionnaires was 203.
Another figure which gave leverage to the study
is the fact that of the 49.3 percent students that have
participated, 50 percent of them were female.
percent of respondents were employees, mainly governmental,
while 8.9 percent were owners of private businesses.
These figures indicate the unique characteristics of
Its population is educated (can
read and write) and it belongs to the middle, upper-
middle and high classes of the society as compared to
other neighborhoods in the city.
This economic bracket
classification is noticed by the.' type of houses prevail- ing throughout the neighborhood.
Ten and eight-tenths percent of respondents were
The 57.1 percent being single as compared .to
40.9 percent married respondents is helpful data to ex
amine difference's and similarities between the married
and single respondents.
One percent of respondents are
divorced and one percent are wodowed to require special
Question 1, Need for MSNC
Is there a need for a multi-service neighborhood
center in al-Zahra neighborhood?
The physical and social setting of al-Zahra neigh
borhood illustrated the lack of recreational and service
facilities in the neighborhood.
The incredible response
to the study and the inclusion of many services such as
mosque, clinic, post office to be grouped with recrea
tional activities are sufficient indications of the
desire to establish a MSNC.
The recommendations of the
Riyadh Action Master Plan (see Chapter 2) are based on. a
strong commitment to provide community centers.
concept of MSNC does not mean that every single activity
has to exist under one roof physically.
It means that
these activities are under one administrative authority. .
In Saudi. Arabia (see Chapter 2), cultural and
recreational programs are lagging in being dealt with in
a centralized fashion to serve all parts of the urban ■ settlements around them. The success of bringing the
necessary services and programs to a community requires
accessibility to such services and programs by all members
of the community when needed.
Establishing nodes in the
city to provide services and programs for all the popu
lation could only be achieved by establishing community
or neighborhood centers.
Neighborhood centers will act
as the unifying administrative authority to bring services
from different governmental agencies under one r o o f .
is possible to delineate programs that will meet the
specific needs of a neighborhood if it is represented by
al-Zahra neighborhood residents’ responses to the ques tionnaires .
Their comments and suggestions are clear
indications of the immediate needs of the neighborhood
for services and facilities in the proposed multi-service
Question 2, Leisure
How do respondents spend their leisure time?
It is very important to know what pe'ople do at the
present time to fulfill their recreational needs.
will provide a linkage between the present situation and
what could be done in the future in providing a program'
of recreational activities and facilities.
Tables 7 and
8 indicate some aspects of leisure time patterns.
■ ' Total of
Never ^ Seldom Often Seldom and Often
Percent (N) Percent ( N ) Percent (N) Percent (N)
Watching TV of
friends a t .home
Go to desert on
children or tak
ing them out for
Promenade in the
In clubs (sports)
In coffee shops 91.6
Table 8. Popular and less popular leisure time activi
activities chosen by 30 percent or more •'
respondents; less popular activities were those
activities chosen by less than 30 percent of
Watching TV and listening to radio
Entertaining friends at home
Go to the desert on weekend
Playing with children \
Prominade in the Suq
In coffee shops
The most popular leisure time activities are those
that take place at h o m e , such as watching television
programsj listening to. radio programs, reading and enter taining friends.
The less popular activities are those
that take place outside the h o m e , such as promenading or
strolling in the S u q 5 visiting coffee shops, and spending
and educational3 such as women's organizations).
phenomenon, by and large, is due to the lack of various
recreational activities in the neighborhood and generally
this applies to the whole city.
The unpopularity of some activities does not re
flect a lack of interest in them, as will be deducted from
the following research questions.
The study has shown
that 74.5 percent of married couples with children under
12 years of age spend time at home entertaining their
At h o m e , however, most of. them have indicated as
a written response to the question that their opportunity
to entertain their children outside the home is' very
limited for the lack of children's playgrounds and parks
(see Table 9) •
Regarding the activity of promenading in the Suq,
it is common in middle eastern cities to take a walk or
stroll in the Suq- during the afternoon or evening h o u r s .
Table 9- Leisure time spent playing with the children according to respondents
■ who have chlldreh under 12 years of age.
(N) • (N)
Seldom and Often
•Visiting the Su-q is not necessarily to shop, but to meet
people and observe the different activities that might
take place in the colorful environment of the S u q .
Nonetheless, this phenomenon is changing for most of the
City population in Riyadh.
The main Suq at the Central
Business District (CBD) is getting farther and farther
from the existing and the developing residential areas
on the outskirts of town.
The Suq is no longer the
only means of congregating or recreation.
The modes of
communication, such as the automobile, radio and tele
vision, and the media have contributed to. lessening the
importance of the Suq. as a cultural center.
The Suq is
congested with vehicular traffic and its character is
changing. Even though many neighborhoods have de veloped their own little shopping areas, they still did .
not and may never obtain the varied character of the
CBD Suq as social gathering pla c e s .
Traditionally in the Arabian culture, the
coffee shop is only for men.
It is shameful for
adolescents to associate with coffee shops where only
adults are allowed to occupy.
It is considered a taboo
for women to congregate in coffee shops.
are usually the gathering places for bachelor males, • especially out-of-towners, strangers and laborers who
have no other means .of congregating or Integrating with
Going out to eat Is not one of the Arabian
The solid family should eat together
and at home.
Only recently one might notice some young
Saudi Arabian families dining out at one of several new
restaurants established in the suburbs to serve foreign
technocrats and their families.
The unpopularity of sports and social clubs is
due to their non-existence at the neighborhood level
(refer to Youth Welfare, Chapter 2).
Question 3, Recreational Activities
What is the hierarchy of recreational activities
that respondents would choose were they to become avail able to them?
This research question encompasses numerous
activities. Thus it requires breaking down the analysis .
to take into account each activity separately, then
discuss all the activities in relation to each other.
Throughout this research question, the "yes"
answers were designated in two types: "yes-now" and "yes-
The purpose behind this designation is to
provide an opportunity for the respondent to think of
future alternatives in choosing an activity, in case
he/she does not have the time or desire to be involved
with certain activity(les) at- the time period of conduct ing the survey.
"Now" corresponds to the Arabic word
"hallan" In the Arabic version of the questions.
an adverb that means presently or right away which in
the questionnaire commonly understood to imply the .time
period within a year of asking the questions.
indicates the urgency for providing the activity(ies).
"Yes-future" means that the activity(ies) is not impor
tant to the respondent, presently, so he/she is not
willing to commit himself or herself to it-.
In the years
to come, however, the respondent would like to have the
This designation of the '"yes" answers will prove
helpful to decide the hierarchy of activities in terms
of importance of availability when phasing the estab lishment and construction of activities and facilities.
"Total yes" include "yes-now" and "yes-future."
constitute the figure that will determine the popularity
of the proposed activities to set them in an overall .;
hierarchy arrangement as will be shown in the preceding
This research question is treated in
presented in the same order as they appear in the ques tionnaire: Question Number 7-
Tables 10 and 11 show that even though
the highest number of respondents who expressed a desire
to practice sport activities were among students, 91
percent5 whole the lowest among housewives was 59.1
percent 3 these activities are popular among respondents
regardless of occupation.
Of the total populatoon, 82.2
percent would like to practice sport activities.
is no significant difference among the sexes in wanting
Therefore, it is necessary to establish sports
activities and facilities at the neighborhood level for
all members of the population.
Tables 12 and 13 show
that only 56.6 percent of the total population are
interested in watching sports as compared to 82.2 percent
who are interested in practicing s p o r t s .
The percentages of employees and respondents, who
own their businesses, 66. 7 percent and 6-1.1 percent re percent and 36.4 percent, in wanting to watch sports.
This discrepancy is due to the fact that students in-?
elude the female members of the population.
activities to be watched.are male oriented.
popular national game is soccer and it is. played in the .
only stadium in Riyadh which does not have accommoda tions for w o m e n .
Another source for watching sports
Table 10. Respondents Interested In practicing sports activities according to
Percent of (N) from '
Respondents Interested in
practicing sports activities-according to s e x .
Percent of (N) from
Table 12.- Respondents Interested In watching sports activities according to occupation -
Percent of (N) from
Percent (N) Percent (N)
Table 13. Respondents interested in watching sports activities according to sex»
Percent . (N)
. 1 7 5 is the national TV. But most spectator sports in tele vision are male rather than female oriented. While
68.0 percent males watch sports, 45.0 percent females do
Table 14 shows that the number of respondents $
82.2 percent or 167 who expressed the desire to practice
sports activities, were broken down to point out the
percentage of respondents who chose each particular
sports activity 3 thus providing the researcher with a
summary of activities according to their popularity.
Table 15 provides popularity of activities according to
At the top of the list of popular activities is
swimming, followed by ping pong, soccer, volleyball and
The least popular activities are pool,
followed by biking, tennis, handball, gymnastics, foot ball and wrestling.
As far as the sexes are concerned,
one finds that among males the most popular activities
respectively are soccer and swimming, ping pong, volley ball, pool and basketball.
The popular activities among
females are swimming, volleyball, ping pong and biking.
Lectures and Symposiums.
Tables. 16 through 19
show that of the total population of the study, more
respondents are interested in listening to literature
(45.0 percent), rather than reciting literature (34.5
Table l 4 . Popular and less popular sports among the
82.2 percent or 167 respondents who chose
activities were those activities chosen by
30 percent or more respondents; less popular -
activities w e r e .those activities chosen by
less than 30 percent of respondents.
1 3 .8 (23 )
Table 15 -
Activities popularity according to sex from
sports (82.2 percent or 167 respondents).
Table 16. Respondents interested in reciting literature according to occupation.
Percent of (N) from
Table 17• Respondents Interested In reciting literature according to sex.
Table 18. Respondents interested in listening to lectures and participating in
Percent of (N) from
Table 1 9 v Respondents interested in listening to lectures and participating in symposiums according to s e x .
percent) in lectures and symposiums -
182 are more popular among students and employees.
though more males chose these activities, there is no
significant difference among males and females in wanting
or rejecting these activities.
Tables 20 and 21 show
that 29.6 percent of respondents would engage in writing
literature with no significant differences between males
and females. .For intellectual activities, such as litera ture, the above figures indicate an Intellectual aware ness among members of the neighborhood.
should be considered special activities to be included
in the -MSNC on a small scale.
Fine A r t s .
Tables 22 through 25 show that 53.7
percent of total respondents would want to practice art work as a hobby, with no significant difference between
males and females.
Fifty-one and eight-tenths percent of
respondents expressed an interest in visiting art shows 3
thus, there is no significant difference between practic ing art work or visiting art.shows.
Table 26 shows that the popular activities are
drawing and calligraphy, and the less popular activities
are decorative design and sculpture.
As far as differ
ences in preference among males and females. Table 27
shows that drawing and decorative design are more popular
Table 20.' Respondents Interested in writing literature according to occupation.
Own Business .
Percent of (N) from
Table 21., Respondents Interested in writing literature according to s e x .
Table 22, Respondents interested in practicing artwork according'to occupation.
Percent of (N) from
Total Population •
CO v j r r
Table 23. Respondents interested in practicing artwork according to sex.
Table,24. Respondents interested in visiting art shows according to occupation.
Percent of (N) from
Table 25. Respondents interested in visiting art shows according to s e x .
Popular and less popular fine art activities
among respondents who are interested in
practicing art work (53.7 percent or 109
respondents from total population).
Table 27- Art activities according to sex among respondents who are interested in practicing
art work (53.7 percent
from total population) or 109 respondents
27 • 6
among females, while sculpture and calligraphy are popular
among m a l e s .
Theatrical A r t s .
Theatrical arts in the context
of this study include acting, music, dancing and singing.
It is perceived as a hobby at the family or neighborhood
The term theatrical art is used for convenience
rather than to imply a formal stage performance.
Tables 28 through 31 show that more respondents",
76.4 percent, were Interested in watching theatrical arts
as opposed to 60.6 percent who expressed an interest in
practicing theatrical arts.
There is no significant
difference between males and females in wanting to prac
tice or watch theatrical arts, even though, the number of
females is slightly higher than males in doing so.
Table 32 shows that females are more interested
in folk dancing and singing than males.
More males are
interested in music.
The interest in acting is mutual
Using the criteria of an activity popularity
to be an activity chosen by 30 percent of respondents or
more. Table 33 shows that all theatrical arts activities
Table .28. Respondents Interested In practicing theatrical arts according to occupation.
Percent . (N)
Percent of (N) from
Table 29V Respondents Interested In practicing theatrical arts according to sex.
Percent (N) Percent .
> 3 . 7
Table 30. Respondents Interested In watching theatrical arts' according to occupation.
Percent of (N) from
23.6 . 6 6 . 5 9.9 76.
Respondents Interested in watching theatrical arts according to sex.
C N )
Percent . (N)
70.9 • 73
Theatrical arts activities among respondents
who are interested in practicing theatrical
art activities (60.6 percent or 123 re spondents from total population).
Table 33 - Popular and less popular theatrical arts activities among respondents who are inter
ested in theatrical arts activities (60 .6
percent or 123 respondents from total
Activity Percent (N)
Movie S h ows.
This study showed that watching
movie shows is popular among all respondents -
show that 84.3 percent of the total population
expressed interest in watching movie shows.
there is no significance between males and females in
Choosing this activity5 the females 3 90 .0 percent, have
outnumbered the m a l e s , 78.7 percent3 of total respondents.
Tables 36 and 37 show that
69.4 percent of the total population expressed an inter
est in practicing scientific hobbies, with no significant
difference between males and females.
Fun and Thinking Games.
Fun and thinking games
From the total population, ,72.9 percent or 148 respondents
chose these activities.
They are. more popular among
as shown in Tables 38 and 39.
These activities are more
popular among students and employees, 79-0 percent and
percent respectively, as compared to respondents who
own their businesses and housewives, 61.1 percent and
5 4 .Q percent respectively.
Sex preferences and popularity
Table 3^• Respondents interested in watching movie shows according to occupation -
Percent of (N) from
(N) Percent (N)
Respondents Interested In watching movie shows according to sex.
(N) Percent (N)
Respondents interested; in scientific hobbies according to occupation,
Own Business .
Percent of (N) from
Table 37- Respondents Interested In scientific hobbies according to s e x .
i k l
. Respondents interested in fun and thinking games according to o c c u pa ti on .
Percent of (N) from
Table' 39• Respondents Interested in fun and thinking games according to sex.
TabTe 40 =
Fun and thinking games activities according
to sex among respondents who. are interested .
in fun and thinking games (72.9 percent or
148 respondents from total population).
Popular and less popular fun and thinking games
among respondents who are interested in fun and
thinking games (72.9 percent or 148 respon dents). — Popular activities were those activi
ties chosen by 30 percent or more respondents;
less popular activities were those activities
chosen by less than 30 percent of respondents.
Dominoes 2 0 .9
Summary of-QBes-tlon- 3 .
In order to sum up the hierarchy of activities,
Table 42 shows the percentages of respondents’ ences in choosing activities.
It also indicates the
urgency of having to provide all the popular activities
Activities requested to be available in the
future are practicing art work and writing and reciting
Question 4,_ Location
Where would the M S N d be located in relation to
The location of the center will greatly depend on
the physical layout of the existing neighborhood; however
in some cases, if this cincept be established in other or
new neighborhoods, the location could be determined
according to the preference Of t h e ■citizens.
The question was asked with three choices offered
inside the neighborhood, in the periphery of the neigh borhood, and totally outside the neighborhood.
shows that the majority would want to establish the
center within the neighborhood.
Easy accessibility to
the facilities is very important.
Table 42. Hierarchy of activities according to time.
Watching movie, shows
Practicing sport activities
Watching theatrical arts
Fun and thinking games
Visiting art shows
Practicing theatrical .arts
Listening to lectures and
participating in symposiums
Practicing art work
the MSNC according to total
of Neigh borhood
Respondents 66.8 133
Question 5, Administration
Who would administer the center? •
For answering this q u e s t i o n t h r e e choices were
given: governmental3 commercial, or community administra tion.
Table 44 shows that the preferences of respondents
respectively are: community 45.6 percent, governmental
33,6 percent, and commercial 20.5 percent.
the facilities are going to be provided through govern
mental programs, it is recommended that the center should
be administered by both the government and the community.
Table 44. Administration of the center according to total population.
A d m i n .
A d m i n .
A d m i n .
Respondents 33-8 66
Question 6, Separation of Sexes
Would males and females be grouped in one center or would they be in two separate centers? •
The issue of mixing the sexes in one center is a
sensitive one for a conservative society as Saudi Arabia
(refer to Dominant Cultural Concerns, Chapter 2).
exclude all possibility, the question should have given
the possibility of establishing one center for both sexes.
Instead, for cultural reasons, the question was stated
giving three culturally accepted possibilities.
three possibilities are: one center that operates at
different times for each sex, thus avoiding .mixing the
sexes; one center divided into two sections, one for men
and the other for women but shares common grounds; or,
two totally separated centers at different locations in
the neighborhood. Table 45 shows that the majority of
Possibility of establishing one or separate
center(s) for males and females according to
Center: • Two
Males 10.1. 10 25,3
Percent of (N) : from
Popula tion 10.2
respondents, 69,5 percent, chose the possibility of two
totally separate centers, while 20.3 percent chose.the
divided center and 10.2 percent chose the possibility of
one center that operates at different times.
There is no
significant difference in this issue between males and
Question 7, Children's Playgrounds •
Would children's playgrounds tie attached to the
m e n ’s or w o m e n ’s facilities?
The mixing of the sexes in the Arabian society is
tolerated up until early childhood between the ages of
8 and 12 depending on how conservative the parents are'.
From observation, in urban communities the females re main unveiled up until puberty.
There is a dilemma in the case of children’s play grounds. If the men and women require two separate •
centers, is it logical to build two separate playgrounds,
one in each center, to allow either parent to take the
children with them to the center?
Or would it be feasible
to build a playground separate from either center? The
establishment of children's playgrounds must take differ
ent levels of development in order, at least, to provide
t h e .minimum of play experiences, wherever there are going
to be children.
The issue of children's playgrounds
should be reexamined in depth because there are no public
children's playgrounds in Saudi Arabia.
The question as asked in this questionnaire has
omitted the possibility of mixing the children of both
sexes in a separate playground from either center be
cause it is advisable if the playgrounds are supervised
by the adult members of the family.
The question as
stated explored three possibilities < These posslbl.il- ■
ties are: Children’s (of both sexes) playgrounds could be
Included In the men's center, to be Included In the
women's center, or to separate them; that is, male child ren with the men and female children with the women.
Table 46 shows that the majority of respondents, 62.9
percent, chose the separation idea, while 29.7 percent
chose to place the children's playgrounds with the w o m e n 's
while only 7.4 percent chose to place them with the men's.
Regarding this question, there was no significance between
were broken down to test the reaction of respondents who
have children under 12 and those who do not..
with children chose the following possibilities: male
children with the men and female children with the women,
61.5 percent.; playgrounds in the women's center, 30.8
percent; in the men's center, 7-7 percent. Respondents ' woth no children gave the following responses:, separation,
63.2 percent; with the women, 29.4 percent; with the men,
7.4 percent (Table 47).
Question 8, Services
What is the hierarchy of services (other than
recreation) to be in eluded in the center?
Associating children's playgrounds with men
and women according to total population.
Boys with men; girls with women
Boys and girls with women
Boys and girls with men
Total of (N)
Percent of (N) from Total
Table 47. Associating children's playgrounds with men
and women according to those who have children
under 12 years and.those with children over
12 years or no children at all.
Respondents with '
Respondents with No.
Children Under 12
Children Under 12
Percent (N) Percent'. (N)
Boys with men; girls with women
Boys and girls woth women
Boys and girls woth men
7.7 • .
Table 48 indicates that all service facilities
212 are needed by the neighborhood.
The hierarchy of facili
ties to. be included in the center is as follows.: small
clinic 83.2 percent, child-care center, 71 percent, mosque
6603 percent, branch post office 56.9 percent, variety
store 55*5 percent, and banquet hall 54.5 percent.
hierarchy of facilities needed by the neighborhood but
outside the MSNC is as follows: public library 5 8 .9 per
cent, gas station 58,9 percent and coffee shop 33*7
Question 9, Time of Operation
What time would the center be most used?
What days of the week is-ihe center to be
b. What time of day is the center used most?
The Islamic week starts with Saturday as the first
day of the week, equivalent to Monday in the Christian
week * The work week starts Saturday and ends Wednesday.
The weekend is on Thursday and Friday for government
work and the school system.
Schools and government offices open daily at
seven o ’clock until three o ’clock. According to resi dents.' responses (Table 49), the center is going to be
Table 48. Service facilities for the MSNC according to total population.
No Need if -
Y e s : Out of Center
Percent' (N) '
Table 49 = Days of the week and time of day the center would be used the most.
Percent ’ Percent IN)
202 open daily.
The most popular time of day for the center
to be operating every day is between 12 and 5 p.m.
The morning period between 8 and 12 is least
popular during work days between Saturday and Wednesday5
but more popular on Thursday and Friday.
The time period between 5 'and 10 p.m. is popular',
but more so on Wednesday and Thursday than F r i d a y .
Therefore, the center should be open Thursday and
Friday morning between 8 a.m. and 12 noon, every day
between 12 noon and 5 p.m., and 5 p.m. to 10 p.m.
Summary of Findings
The findings of this study were as follows:
There is a pressing need for establishing a MSNC
in al-Zahra neighborhood.
For the majority of respondents, leisure time at
present is spent in such passive activities as
watching TV or listening to music, entertaining
friends at h o m e , and reading.
The majority of respondents* expressed a desire to
participate in the following activities if they
become available at the nejghborhood level:
sports, theatrical activities, art work, scien tific hobbies, and watching movie s h ows.
4 Recreational facilities as well as service facilities' such as mosque, small clinic, child
care center, banquet h a l l , branch post office,
variety store, public library and coffee shop
should be included in the proposed MSNC.
Most respondents would want to establish two
w o m e n .
Children’s playgrounds should be established in
both m e n ’s and women's centers.
7. The center should be managed sequentially accord ing to importance by (1) the community, (2) the government, and (3) the private sector.
8. The center should be located within the neighbor hood .
9. There is no significant difference between males and females in spending their leisure time, ex cept in three activities: watching TV or listen
ing to the radio, in coffee shops, and in a sports
Women watch TV and listen to radio more .
often than men and more men spend their leisure
time in coffee shops and at sports c l ubs.
rejecting activities between males and females in
participating in sports activities, listening
to lectures and symposiums, writing literature,
practicing art work, visiting art shows, partici
pating or watching theatrical arts, watching movie
shows or scientific hobbies.
11'. There is a significant difference in wanting or .
rejecting activities between males and females in
such activities as fun games, reciting literature or watching sports.
There is a significant' difference between males
and females in choosing these sports: soccer3 ■
foosba.llj p o o l 3 gymnastics and ping pong for m e n .
Handball and biking were chosen by more w o m e n .
13. There is no significant difference between males ■
and females- in choosing these sports r.basketball,
volleyball, tennis, swimming and wrestling.
There is a significant difference between males
and females in choosing design activities,
women chose it.
15• There is no significant difference between males and females in choosing such activities as draw ing, sculpture and calligraphy.
16. There is a significant difference between men and women in choosing folk dancing activities. More women chose it.
There is no significant difference bet ween men
and women in choosing such activities as music,
singing, and acting.
There is a significant difference between males
and females in choosing chess activity.
chose i t .
.' dominos, backgammon and kairum.
' . .
suggested it might be in order for it to gain popularity
by others who might be interested.
The setting for most
suggested facilities and activities is already provided
within the context of the proposed multi-service neigh
borhood center; however, there are certain activities that
could not be included in the realm of MSNC such as
horseback riding or amusement parks, which belong to a
different setting and management.
Facilities such as a
children’s playground and a neighborhood park are inte gral to any neighborhood planning.
In the American
tradition, a movie theater does not necessarily fall under
the category of MSNC or community center facilities.
a country where movie theaters do not exist legally, it
might be a sound thought to introduce the movie theater
concept in a small and effective level with proper con trol at the community or neighborhood level.
particular study, the number of people who would want to
watch movie shows were they available was 1-71 respondents,
or 84.3 percent of respondents.
As was mentioned earlier,
most of the- other suggested activities should be initiated
by interested individuals.
suggestions were classified under
Activities s Community Services 3 Groups and Organizations,
and Other Suggestions.
Suggestions are listed under each
sub-heading according to frequency (see Tables 50-53). ■
The review .of literature in the area of providing
facilities and activities for MSNC took research in
recreation as the basis for the provision of facilities
and activities. The concept of advocacy planning as sug gested by Gold (1973) was a logical step toward estab lishing MSNC. Gold's concept evolves around the indi vidual user's participation in the planning process.
concept of advocacy planning is new for Saudi Arabia.
Saudi Arabian officials are aware of the lack of service
and recreational facilities for the population at large.
Provision of basic services at the neighborhood or com munity level is virtually non-existent at the present .
time, especially parks and recreation facilities.
concept of advocacy planning provides a linkage between
consumer and supplier; it points out demands..
survey conducted by the author in al-Zahra neighborhood
has generated ah overwhelming response, thus indicated
the validity of advocacy planning and pointed Out resi
dents' preference in choosing activities and facilities
to.be included in a MSNC. The data of this study could .
Table 50„ Frequency of suggestions regarding recrea tional facilities and activities.
Recreational Facilities and Activities
Neighborhood park— -public garden
Neighborhood movie theater
Horseback riding -
Facilitating and organizing desert, camping trips
such as pinball, fljppers and other machine
Physical fitness program
Oriental martial arts— karate, judo, e t c .
Music club— teaching music
Amusement park for children
Small zoo— contains birds and fish
Neighborhood sports club
Folklore theater club
Ice skating rink
Amusement park for women ,
Contests between families, fun games
Recreational Facilities and Activities
Exchange art s h o w s 'between neighborhoods
Revival of old folks games
Western dancing'— American/European ■
T§.ble 51 -
Frequency of suggestions regarding community
Resting hall and restrooms
Clean environment— awareness and enforcement
Public transportation for the center and this neighborhood
Bakery(s) in the neighborhood
Coffee shop and buffet
Beauty salon for women--coiffeuse
Driving school '
Branch police station
Driving school for women
Social worker or a counseling office
Animal clinic— veterinarian ;
Branch-office of the city municipality to meet neighborhood demands
Branch office to pay electric and telephone bills
Beauty salon for men.
Car wash facility
Community Services Frequency
Charity box to help the needy
Committee to follow up on what other centers are doing to exchange ideas and programs
Government representative to solve problems
and offer services without resorting to main
governmental agencies— security, passports, 'etc .
Handicapped and mentally retarded services
Home repair services
Library must be equipped with a variety of
visual and audio aids.
It should include
international cultural literature5 especially
in the field of women's studies.
Missing children's announcements; lost and found services
Modern laundry facilities
Pharmacy to supply the clinic
Proper lighting throughout neighborhood
Special section for children in library
Taxi service station in the center
Vending machines '
1 .. .
Frequency of suggestions regarding forming
groups and organizations.
Groups and Organizations
Home economics club--sewing) embroidery,
cooking, e t c .
Environmental protection group
Modern languages club
Women's activities club— women awareness
Group "watch-dog" to supervise and regulate
prices in local market
Group hearings for neighborhood planning,
building permits, naming streets and
Group to plant street islands and other
public open spaces in the neighborhood
Interior design and decor appreciation group
Frequency o f 'suggestions that do not fall
under previous categories.
Children of both sexes should share.the
One center for both sexes
Areas for future expansion of center
Awards for literature and other activities
Fining people for law breaking— respect
Printing facilities for typing information
pamphlets, e t c .
Special rates for low income people
also provide guidelines for programming the activities
according to sex and age.
RECOMMENDATIONS AND SUGGESTIONS FOR FURTHER RESEARCH
Chapter 6 concludes this study with recommenda- •
tiotis to plan and design a.MSNC in al-Zahra neighborhood
which could be generalized for any Saudi Arabian neigh
borhood for this whole study being the first of its kind
in Saudi Arabia was intended to provide an example that
could be utilized in any neighborhood.
At the end of the
chapter suggestions for further research are mentioned.
The response to the survey conducted by the author
showed the viability of the concept of advocacy planning
in determining facilities and activities for al-Zahra
neighborhood to be included in a M S N C .
A comprehensive planning program is suggested
for establishing MSNC for the Saudi: Arabian neighborhood.
Figure 9 illustrates the components of such a planning
X — financial support
list of act ivities
& facilities c o n s t r u c t i o n
Figure 9• Program for planning and designing a
MSN C .
The first, stage of planning is to define a
A neighborhood is an area defined by the
city master p l a n .
In towns and villages where there are
no master plans, a neighborhood could be defined by
common characteristics such as physical boundary, exist
ing services or focal points such as a mosque, a hospital,
a school or a suq.
In this study, al-Zahra neighborhood
was defined according to Riyadh master plan classifica tions .
Need for Services and Recreational Facilities
The second stage of planning is to determine
needed services and recreational facilities.
ment body represented by the municipality or branch
municipality will determine cert ain services, and recrea tional facilities that a neighborhood needs.
could also be pointed out utilizing the concept of
advocacy planning to involve citizen participation for
they know best what they need.
Concerned citizens or
experts from the municipality, could assist in determin ing needs . . .
Private commercial firms could point out needs
that they could fulfill, but they should not take any
action without consultation with the municipality and the
residents of the neighborhood.
In alr-Zahra neighborhood, a survey was conducted
by the author as a concerned citizen to point out needs.
Survey of Existing Activities and Facilities
After pointing out needs by the community, the
third stage of planning begins with a preparation of
existing site and activity analysis.
It is possible
that some needs could be met with existing facilities
that are not used .effectively, such as schools, public
lands or private vacant land that could be acquired with
Also, the site analysis could provide
possible solutions for land by enclosing streets either
temporarily or permanently.
A study of leisure time patterns and acquiring
.services inside and outside a neighborhood will set the
basis for providing an effective program of facilities
In al-Zahra neighborhood the existing two schools
are not used for community leisure time.
patterns' as indicated in the analysis of data. Chapter 5,
showed, the effect of lack of recreational facilities in
People either engage in passive home
activities or they seek recreation outside the neighbor hood .
and financial support 3 it is the duty of the municipality
under the direction of a landscape architect to conduct
List of Activities and Facilities
The fourth stage of planning is to list all : facilitiesa activities and services a neighborhood n e e d s .
This is based on the previous two stages.
high economic bracket:, did not need social services
characteristic of poor areas and inner city residents.
Facilities, activities and services will differ from one
neighborhood to another.
Activities chosen by the residents of al-Zahra
neighborhood are detailed in Research Question
Table 54 shows activities as chosen' by males and
An activity is -considered of first priority
to be established if 30 percent of respondents chose it.
If less than 30 percent, but more than ten percent chose
it, it is considered of second priority.
This kind of
priority designation will help to construct facilities'
according to two stages or phases.
In some instances,
three stages of implementation might be more practical.
Table 54. Activities for al-Zahra MSNC according to sex and priorities.
Watching Thea trical Art
Fun and Thinking Games
Watching Thea trical Art
Tab1e 54.-— continued.
Child Care Center
The main financial provider is the government
through the municipality.
The community could provide
for certain facilities through donations.. The private
sector could participate on a small scale to provide
Financial sup- • secured before proceeding to the next stage.
The sixth stage of planning and the most prob design of a M S N C .
design should be presented in a master plan that takes
tween the sexes, location of facilities' and criteria for
Separation. Between the S e x e s .
To offer equal
opportunities-for males and females, a designer must pro vide facilities for b o t h .
However, a designer must avoid
duplicating facilities especially expensive ones such as
a library or
clinic as much as possible.
to solve this problem take two approaches.
Since it is
established in this study that two centers should be pro
vided, one approach would be to separate the. centers to
act as nodes for a park system that will include large
scale facilities such as sports fields, bike route, a
public library and possibly a movie theater and auditor ium for large gatherings.
The facilities within the park
system are those that could not be built twice (common
facilities) so they could be used by -both sexes at alter nate times (see Figure 10).
The park system approach might work successfully
in planning new neighborhoods or in neighborhoods where
continuous tracts of land including street enclosing are
If a neighborhood is too congested and a park
system is not feasible, another approach would be to
acquire parcels of land in the neighborhood for the common
In designing facilities for males and females, a
study such as this one provided preferences of activities
by either sex.
Therefore, each center will differ in its
facilities and physical layout and appearance.
Both males and females should be able
to walk to the facilities of a M S N C ; however, first
priority should be given to women since they are not
allowed to drive,, and 'to children, and older people. s.inCe
they cannot drive. A bus d'ystem could resolve this prob lem. .
.. V : ,
In new neighborhoods, the park system approach
discussed previously will determine the location, of a
Two separate centers connected with a
In a built-up neighborhood5 the availability of
undeveloped land or land acquisition will determine the
It is preferable to locate a MSNC to be associ
ated with an existing public land such as a park or a
school in order to gain space.
Possibly men's centers
could be incorporated with boys' schools and women's
centers with g i rls'
In new master plans for
growing cities5 towns and villages concentration of
public facilities should take into consideration the
concept of MSNC.
If a center is to serve two neighborhoods, a first
priority should be given to the less advantaged o n e .
some instances, some facilities will serve one neighbor
hood , while others will serve more than one neighborhood
and should be located on the shared boundaries between
In order to resolve the problem of locating MSNCs
in the city of Riyadh, a survey of public land such as
parks and schools is required to divide the city into
new neighborhoods called service areas for an even
distribution of facilities among the city population at
neighborhoods might create conflicts where some
neighborhoods have several schools and large tracts of
public lands while others do n o t .
Another example is
that some neighborhoods are divided by major thorough
fares that make a neighborhood disunited and its divisions
associated with its adjacent neighborhood.
surveyed of al-Zahra neighborhood is very much a part
of al-Malaz neighborhood, rather than the rest of the
neighborhood west of 60th Street. For lack of unde
veloped public land, it is recommended that the proposed
MSNO be associated with a.public school or a public
park (see Figure 12.on page 246). In the sectioned sur
vey of al-Zahra neighborhood, the women's MSNC could be
The men's MSNC could be associated with the boys'
schools either in the section of the neighborhood west
of 60th Street that was not surveyed or in the adjacent
neighborhood of al-Malaz.
In developing a general design
criteria for a MSNC in the Saudi Arabian neighborhood,
five major points are sought.
1. Spatial recommendations: a.
Utilize minimum space to provide maximum
This could be achieved by.
designing multi-purpose facilities, such as
one court for tennis, volleyball and basket ball when possible. Also, this could be
achieved by using roofs of buildings for
some facilities such as roof gardens, park
ing- or even some sports activities such as
tennis (in congested areas).
b. Extend the spaces of a MSNC by closing
c. Parking and transportation accommodations
must be adequate and efficient.
A taxi stop
and a bus stop and bicycle parkings must- be
d. Vehicular and pedestrian access to the MSNC
must be direct, clear and adequate.
e. Separate between traffic types: motor
vehicles, bikes and pedestrians.
f . Management of the MSNC must be located to be
able to supervise all facilities of the cen t e r .
g. Small children's"playspaces must be provided
with or adjacent to spaces for adults to
h. The swimming pool must be accompanied by
a shower and locker room.
where it is easily accessible to all
visitors of the MSNC.
Utilize soft forms such as plants and mounts
to define spaces and create barriers.
k. Spaces must flow into each other3 thus
creating harmony, unity3 congruity and a sense
1. The center should be a landmark in the neigh borhood.
It should have a. vertical element
that is visible from different viewpoints in
Activity and facility types: a.
Activities in the center could be divided
into two types: passiave such as reading or
watching movie shows 3 and active such as
swimming or biking3 e t c .
Facilities in the center could be divided
into three types: indoors, outdoors, and
those containing activities.that could take
place both indoors and outdoors as follows:
Indoor or Outdoor
Fun & Thinking Games Ping Pong Table
Environmental 'recommendations: a . Climatic conditions must be given careful
considerations, such as the usage of arid land
vegetation, usage of building materials to
insure maximum insulation, orientation of
buildings to maximize energy saving and
provide comfort, and utilization of solar
energy as an alternate source of heating and
bo Conservation of water by using arid land vege tation, utilizing concepts of landscape de
sign to minimize water consumption, and
utilizing sewage treatment.methods for
c. The human environment must be healthy and
• pleasing; therefore, the MSNC must be con structed to provide visual pleasure, as well
as being functional.
Its design must provide
a model for good taste in material selection
and design concepts that reflect the Arabian
The environment of the MSNC should meet the
needs and appeal to all users including the
handicapped. To provide ease of accessi
bility and enjoyment for the handicapped,
stairs must be replaced by r a m p s .
ture of horizontal and vertical surfaces
must be fit for people in wheelchairs or the
Design of sports facilities such as
swimming pools and play equipment must take
the handicapped into consideration.
Functional and spatial relationships:
All components of the MSNC must have a logical
functional relationship to each other.
illustrates the functional relationshops between
the major components of a MSNC. Activities are •
grouped together according to associations of
The focal point of.the diagram is
the group containing access, information and
These activities focus outward as
indicated by the arrows, in order to show their
responsibility of assuring access and providing
sto ra g e restrooms m ajn T'" t en a n ce g ym a rc h in g s o c c e r h an d ball clinic pos t offici social se rv ic e sto re v o lle y ball _ play ground tennis
b a s k e t ^
' " m a n a ge m e nt a c c e s s mo vie m e e t in g
'^bf feeshoi arts d ra ma gam e s
Figure 11. Diagrammatic functional relationships.
t e a g a r d e n
'amphP'X C th eate r
information and management to all other components
of the M S N C .
Access to the center includes
pedestriansj bikers, private cars, taxis } buses3
service vehicles (garbage5 supplies and main tenance ), and emergency vehicles (fire and ambu lance) .
The group containing restrooms', mainten
ance and storage is focusing inward to assure
the provision of these components to all other
components of the center. The other groups are .
related to each other to help associate them in
the design process .
Notice the inclusion in this
diagram of activities such as post office,
clinic, a social service, library and movie
It was mentioned earlier that these
activities might be expensive to be duplicated
twice, once for men and another for women; there
fore, they should be placed separately at a
location to serve b o t h .
This argument holds
true if these activities are to be provided on a
large scale; how e v e r , they could be provided in
library could be a reading room, the clinic a
first aid facility, the,social service a single
room with one counselor dealing with a problem
common to both men and women, and the movie
theatre could be incorporated with the banquet
hall where a projector and screen are the only
The next step beyond the functional diagram
of Figure 11 is the spatial relationships between
the components of the MSNC which are shown in
What is meant by spatial relationships
is not areas and sizes of facilities; what is
meant is a preliminary design concept based on
circulation and association of functions when
for the next step which involves designing with
actual dimensions and details of design elements
that each component requires.
In reality and for
lack of land,- some activities are going to be
located on the second and possibly the third
floor such as management.
For example, hobbies
could be located over arts, counseling over
clinic, gymnasium over storage and restrooms, etc.
It is important to note that if the center is
associated with a school or park, the nature of
the diagrams will change.
Existing facilities ■ should be incorporated with the center.
246 s p o r t f i e l d s s e r v i c e gym st or e post clin-r social s e r v i c e b a n q u e t t e movi e m e e t i n g m u l t i c ou r t m a n a g e r child play
pool t e a gar den
# r eading rest room wasn s t o r a g e info ped bike bus taxi p ar k i n g cars
Figure 12. Spatial relationships.
5. Dimensions of. facilities:
Following is a list of dimensions for some
facilities to be included in a MSNO which is
shown in Table 55 -
Dimensions indicated by
asterisks are approximately and they will change
at the actual design phase according to needs
as perceived by the designer.
The construction of a MSNC should take place in
two phases: Survey of people's preferences provides a
hierarchy of activities that are needed immediately and
those that are needed in the future.
The hierarchy could
also be based on popularity of activities, financial
constraints or availability of l a n d .
The management of the MSNC should be the combined
efforts of the government represented by the municipality,
the community and the private sector as a hired help.
.The evaluation technique should serve as a feed
back to correct any deficiency in the planning and design
The course of action could be altered at cer tain points to better meet the requirements.
Table 55* Dimensions of facilities.
Archery (three targets)
Washroom and locker room
Dimensions i,n Feet
20 x 30
40 x 30*
100 x 50*
40 x 40*
20 x 20*
10 x 10*
30 x 40*
40 x 40*
20 x 20*
40 x 40*
40 x 40*
36 x 78
30 x 60
84 x 50
48 x 47
333 x 208
330 x 18.0'
50 x 100*
100 x 50*
50 x 100*
Table 55 . — continued -
* Approximate dimensions, subject to change.
Dimensions in Feet
Suggestions for Future Research
Since the findings of this, st.udy determined that
a MSNC'is a necessity in al-Zahra neighborhood, and its
functions and activities were laid, out according to
citizens' participation, it is recommended that a large-
scale project be launched to take into account the city
as a whole and possibly the future of the whole country
in a study to develop a model for establishing MSNCs for
all Saudi Arabian neighborhoods, each according to its
sociological setting and economic needs.
This study has proven that the concept of advocacy
planning is a valid tool to involve the residents of
al-Zahra neighborhood in designing a MSNC.
this concept, a survey was conducted in the neighborhood
and its outcome has helped the researcher to come up with
a planning program for designing multi-service neighbor hood centers for the Saudi Arabian neighborhood.
SUMMARY OF THE SELF-EXPRESSION THEORY*
The theory of recreation as self-expression
recognizes the nature of man, his anatomical
structure, his psychological inclination, his
feeling of capacity, and his desire for self-
It accepts the point of view of
Hart that the motive of life is to function and
that "joy— real happiness, the thing people are
after in all experience— is to act, to do things,'
The theory takes into account the
fact that the forms of activity through which man
achieves this joy are conditioned by his mechani cal possibilities- of behavior, his physical condi- .
tion, and his attitudes and habits.
activities are those for which his body structure is
well adapted, such as running, climbing, or singing.
M a n ’s inclination to activity and the satisfaction
he gains from it at a particular time are also
influenced by the abundance of his physical energy
or the nature of his desire for mental or emo tional gratification.
At one time he may desire
strenuous activity, at another relaxation.
certain conditions he may seek adventure through
new experiences; under others he may crave the
satisfaction attained through old associations.
According to this theory, recreation is the con- ■
dition that results when an individual engages in
an activity which yields an experience character ized by a.sense of well-being and self-expression.
It may result from m a n ’s urge to be active and to
use his faculties and powers to the u t m o s t .
is through recreation that man finds the satisfac
tion, of his desires to achieve, share, create, win
approval, and express his personality.
variety of forms which provide recreation through
self-expression is explained by the complexity of
man's nature and of his environment.
* Taken from Butler (1976, -p. 6).
While the self-expression theory is somewhat
general3 it is in line with modern thinking.
It is true that man seeks to express himself
in work, in religious experience, and in study,
as well as in recreation.
However, in the first
three of these activities, he often seeks rewards
he seeks no outside reward.
Thus recreation is
activity, self-expression, carried on for its
The questionnaire was prepared in both the
English and Arabic languages and was. distributed to resi dents in .the a l -Zahra.neighborhood.
This Appendix con tains both copies . ,
In the name of God, Most Gracious, Most Merciful.
Brothers and Sisters, thfe. residents of al-Zahra
neighborhood in the city of Riyadh:
I am pursuing my graduate research at The Uni
versity of Arizona in the field of Landscape Architecture
(Urban Design). In order to achieve the practical .ex
perience from the academic knowledge to benefit the Saudi
Arabian society, it has been decided to conduct a study
that will determine the needed recreational and service
facilities in al-Zahra neighborhood.
The study requires obtaining your opinions and
suggestions in the form of the attached Questionnaire.
This will lead to determining the actual needs (facili
ties) in accordance with Islamic and Arabic traditions
This study will also make planning and design
in the realm of recreational and service facilities
scientific and realistic.
This study is supported by the Ministry of Higher
Education, the Saudi Arabian Educational Mission in the
United States, The University of Arizona, the Municipality
of the city of Riyadh, the General Presidency of Youth
Welfare, the Ministry of the Interior, the General
Department of Statistics.and the Office of City Planning.
Would you please answer the questionnaire, noting
The aim of this study is an academic research;
the information will be confidential and there
is no need to give your name.
In the spaces provided for answers, use.this
This resea-ch is designed for. both men and women,
so each should answer them independently; the
facilities will be established for each separately.
1 kindly hope that the literate will help the
illiterate to fill in the questionnaire.
This questionnaire is to be answered by anyone
15 years of age and over.
If you have any questions, you may reach me in the
al-Zahra neighborhood at 61966.
Your cooperation is appreciated. Thank you.
lo Age:'_____ years .
2. S e x : Male .
3- Marital status: Single • Married____ ^
4. Occupation: Student._________
5 < children under 12 years of a g e :
How do you spend your leisure time? .
Never Seldom Often
__ ■ A. Playing with the children?
Or taking them out?
Watching television or
listening to radio or recordings? __________________
C. ; _____ __________ _
Go to the Suqs for a walk? __________________-
E. Go to the desert on weekends? ____________
P. In coffee shops?
G. In a club (sports) to par ticipate in activities?
H . Reading books or magazines?
Which of the following general activities would you
like to practice if it became available:
Want it Want it
Want it .
A. Practice sports activi ties
Want it Now c .
Reciting literature and
participating in sym posiums
Listening to and watching .
lectures and symposiums
Writing articles, stories
'Practicing fine arts
GT. ' Visiting art shows
Watching theatrical arts
Watching movie shows
Thinking games (cards,
From the previous general activities that you
have chosen, specify the type b e l o w .
5. Ping Pong
6. Tennis .
7. Swimming .
B. Fine Art:
1. Drawing •
Co Performing Arts:
1 . Music
3 • Folk dancing
4 = Acting_____
Do Thinking Games:
1. Cards _
Suggest activities you would like to participate
in and that were not mentioned above.
If these activities were grouped in one center, what do
you think about this.center regarding t h e ■following:'
1. Inside the neighborhood
2. Neighborhood periphery_____
3. Outside the neighborhood
3 • Community .
C. F o r m : '
One center for both men and women that operates
at different times’for each_____
One center'with two sections, one for men and
one for women .
Two separate centers, one for men and the
other for women
D. Playgrounds (for children under 12 years of age).:
2. Placed with the women's section
3* Girls with the women and beys with the men _
8-12 :00 12-5 :00 5-10 :-00 P .m. .
1. Sat-Tues_____ _______ ^
2. Wednesday ■ ________ _
3. Thursday_____ ___________________
4. Friday_______ _______________ ^_____ .
Would you like to see the following services provided
in your neighborhood?
Yesj within Y e s , outside
No the center the center
Child Care Center
Small Post Office
_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _
grocery, and daily household needs)
H. Gas Station
Coffee Shop ' .. ___________
Suggest services you think are necessary to the
neighborhood and that were not mentioned above
THE U N IV ER SITY OP ARIZONA
GRADUATE S TU D IES
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LETTERS' OF RECOMMENDATION
The following pages contain letters .of recommenda tion from:
Saudi Arabian Educational Mission to the United
States and Canada.
School of Renewable Natural Resources, The
University of Arizona.
3* General Presidency of Youth Welfare.
.4. Department of General Statistics.
5. Municipality of Riyadh.
6. Office of City Planning.
1 T 1 Y / Y / 1
I q .— j J I a l l I
^ * 11 a »
«u— jK i j i t — i l
S au d i A r a b ia n E d uca tiona l M is s io n
to the U n ite d States and C a na da
2223 West Loop South—Suite 400
Houston. Texas 77027
TCkSX: 77 S177 v— * * — u JUJI js^baJUjl^uLi^so-jUJI uJU /Ulkll o- ■ ,) j -aJ I n T.
os Li ^le. Hjj-sIj L I «..l I a__ lj jJJ t ( o— jj L ■s.nJ I a-w
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T H E U N I V E R S I T Y O F A R I Z O N A
T U C S O N , A R I Z O N A 8 5 7 2 1
C O L L E G E O F A G R I C U L T U R E
SCHOOL OF RENEW ABLE N A T U R A L RESOURCES
12 May 1977
TO WHOM IT MAY CONCERN:
Khalid Saad Al-Nasaar is a graduate student in the Program in Landscape
Architecture, School of Renewable Natural Resources, College of A g r i culture at the University of Arizona in Tucson.
In order to fulfill the requirements leading to the Masters Degree in
Landscape Architecture, Mr. Al-Nassar is conducting research to measure
the reaction of the residents of the neighborhood of Almalaz in Riyadh,
Saudi Arabia, towards the concept of a multi-service neighborhood center
and to study the predominant visual elements in the neighborhood.
The Graduate Committee in the Program of Landscape Architecture and the
Director of the School of Renewable Natural Resources approve this re
search and support Mr. Al-Nassar in his endeavor. We hope that Mr. Al-
Nassar will have the help and cooperation of the city officials and
Almalaz residents. Thank you.
Robert Bechtel, Ph.D.
Michael M. McCarthy, Ph
Assistant Professor of >
School of Renewable Natural Resources
W. H. Havens
Professor & Chairman
Robert M. Erickson
Landscape Architecture Program
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LIST OF REFERENCES
1965 Child's play; a creative approach to playscapes
for today's child. New Y o r k :
Abu al-Xla, Mahmud T.
1972 .Geography of Saudi Arabia, 2nd ed. Vol. 2, 532 p.
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al-Khedaire, Khedaire S.
Cultural perception and attitudinal differences
among Saudi Arabian male college students in the
United States .
Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation,
The University of Arizona, Tucson.
al-Sharif, A. ■
1975 The city of Riyadh.
Riyadh, Saudi Arabia: Darat
Burch, William R.
1970 Recreation preferences as culturally determined
In Elements of outdoor recreation
planning:, B. L. Driver, ed., pp. 61-103- Uni
versity Microfilms, School of Natural Resources,
University of Michigan, East Lansing.
Burton, Thomas L.
1971 Experiments in recreation research.
Jersey: Rowman and Littlefield.
Butler, George D .
1976 Introduction to community recreation.
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CBS News Almanac.
1978 Martin A. Bacheller, e d .
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Hammond Almanac, Inc. •
Davis, Hugh C, .
1970 Technological:, change and recreation planning.
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Driver; ed., pp. 113-120. Univ. Of Mich. Press, -
D e a s y , C. M.
1974 Design for human a f f a i r s .
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and S o n s .
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E m b r e e , John
1939 Suye. Mura, a Japanese village.
of Chicago Press.
Fearn, Milton L ., Ira J. Hutchinson and David C . Park
1973 Recreation for everyone.
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leisure s e r v i c e s .
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Gold, Seymour M.
U r b a n r e c r e a t i o n planning.
P h i l a d elphia: Lea and
F e b i g e r .
1 9 5 1 .
In Reader in urban soci ology .
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197-6 Public recreation a d m i n i s t r a t i o n .
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1970 Homo Luden— a study of the play element in cul ture. Boston: Beacon Press.
Kahhalah, Umar Rida
1964 Geography of the Arabian peninsula, 2nd e d .,
684 p. M e c c a :‘Maktabat al-Nahdah a l - H a d i t h a h .
K i r a , Alexander
1966 The b a t h r o o m : New Y o r k :
Bantam B o o k s .
Lewis 3 Bernard,
1976 Outline of Islamic history.
In Islam and the Arab
world. Bernard Lewis, e d ., pp. 25-56.
American Heritage Publishing Co., Inc.
1975 Multiservice neighborhood centers: A plan for
Tucson, Arizona: Llewelyn-
Malik, Saleh A.
1973 Rural migration and urban growth in Riyadh', Saudi
Unpublished Doctoral Dissertation, The
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor.
Ministry of Finance and National Economy (MFNE)
1976 Statistical indicator.
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Ministry of Planning
1976 Second development plan 1975-1980.
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Ministry for Physical Planning
1977a-' Riyadh action master plans: Technical report 2. .
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Ministry for Physical Planning "7;
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Naseer, Samier A.
Sewage effluent: A partial solution to Riyadh's
Unpublished Masters Thesis, The
University of Arizona, Tucson.
Nie, N. H. , C. H. Hull, J. G... Jenkins, K. Steinbrenner and
1975 Statistical Package for the Social Sciences (SPSS) .
New York: McGraw-Hill, I n c .
Northrup, F. S. C.
1974 The meeting of east and west.
New York: Macmillan
and C o .
Patai, Raphael '
1973 The Arab mind. New York: Charles Scribner's Sons.
1977 Manager, El Con Shopping Center, Tucson, Arizona,-
1962 Play, dreams and imitation in childhood.
York: ¥. ¥. Norton and Co.
Rapoport, Rhona and Robert Rapoport
1975- Leisure and the family life cycle.
Boston:.Routledge and Kegan Paul.
Redstone, Louis G .-
1975 New dimensions in shopping centers and stores.
New York: McGraw-Hill.
Saarinen, Thomas F .
1976 Environmental planning--perception"and behavior.
Boston: Houghton Mifflin Company.
1973 A scientific American book.
New York: W. H.
1971 Architecture and community: Environmental design
in an urban society. London: Peter Owen.
1969 Personal space.
Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice
Hall, I n c .
van der Ryn, Sim
1968 Socio-physical technology.
Proceedings of the
Second Annual Workshop on Socio-physical Tech nology, AIA, Washington, D.C.
Vicker, Ray .
1975 You can put nomads in houses, but you can't make
'em stay. Wall Street Journal, Vol. CLXXXVI,
No. 28, August 8, p. 7 .
1977 London: Whitaker and S o n s .
Gosforth: The sociology of an English village.
Chicago: University of Chicago Press .
Wingo 5 Lowdon
Cities and space: The future use of urban land.
1970 The state of the art of comprehensive planning.
In Elements of outdoor recreation planning.
B. L. Driver, e d ., pp. 225-234.
Microfilm, School of Natural Resources, University
of Michigan, Ann Ar b o r .
World Almanac and Book of Pacts 1978
1977 New Y o r k : Newspaper Enterprises Association, Inc.
1: 20 000 t PHILIP HOLZMANN ( F 7 )
% INTERNATIONAL (CONSULTANTS) F 7
J MANAGER FOR NORCONSULT
* NORCONSUL1 O F F IC E F 7
5 VBB GUEST-HOUSE
DOXIAOIS ASS (CONSULTANTS)
ZOELLNER GUEST - HOUSE
SAUDI CH EMICAL H6
6 VIAK G UE ST -H O US E
10 NILS P LUND OF FICE
It SAUDI ASFALT G U E S T - H O U S E
12 ABV G U E S T - H O U S E
13. VBB TENNIS COURT H 6
14 VBB HOUSES 4 NOS H I
15 ASEA OFFICE t GUEST-HOUSE H 6
16 ASEA RESIDENCE H 6
17 SAUDI ASFALT RE SI DE NC E H I
18 V IA K R E S ID E N C E HS
19 SWED1EL RESIDENCES 3 NOS H I
20 VI AK RESIDENCE J7
21 KOMMUNTJANST FLATS J t
22 BIOKAT O F F I C E HS
23 L U F T H A N S A OFFICE F 5
24 VBB OFFICE F S
26 SWEDTEL O FFI CE G4
27 JAPAN STEAKHOUSE
28 VI A K R E S I D E N C E F 6
29 OBEID HOSPITAL F 6
30 SHANGRI LA (CHINES REST 1 F S
31 CUSTOMS E 2
32 TE L E P H O N E CO F 5
33 FI RE STATION FS
34 ROUND B U IL D I N G F 8
35 NATIONAL HOSPITAL
36. UN IV ER SI TY LIBRARY
ABV G UE ST -HO USE
39 NORCONSULT G UE S T- H O U S E F 4
40 GREEN VALLEY (REST I I SP IN NE Y'S SU PE RM
41 AR EE N TRAVEL E I
42 KANOO TRAVEL E 10
43 SA UD IA TRAVEL E 10
44 ATTAR TRAVEL E 10
46 RI YADH HOTEL F 9
46 SAUDIA HOTEL C l
47 AL SADHAN SUPERM F I
48 CANSULT O FFI CE
49 ELECTROLUX 0 4
50 BEIJER MIDDLY EAST AB
SI. VOLVO SERVICE
52 FISH MARKET
54 VOLVO E 9
55 PONTIAC E 10
2 0 0 0 M E T R E S
M IN ERAL
AFFA s y a m
M IN OF
AVIATION q q p c o B B #
□ □ Q a m o w a
AL SHARK m
.— . T n S U . H I B D D I
9 O O 1J O J U ® H I B 0
MIN I OF
□ O D D
□ o c l
a n a o c
[ j n n n
Map of the city of Riyadh showing al-Zahra
neighborhood. — Courtesy of VIAK Surveying
Company (1977) .
al-Nassar Thesis, Landscape
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