Can you dig it? Thousands of builders work to expand Prophet’s Mosque
Pilgrims walk past the Prophet's Mosque in the holy city of Medina. (File/AFP)
In a race against time, over 6,000 individuals, from engineers to construction workers, are pooling their efforts to complete the expansion of the Prophet's Mosque.
That huge work force is supervised by the committee of expropriation, which is part of the project initiated by Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques King Abdullah to expand the mosque and develop the surrounding areas.
The team is preparing the infrastructure in the eastern and western sides of the mosque and have already removed more than 100 properties in the central area, including the Ansar market, Awqaf building and the old children's hospital, while work is under way to remove the King Abdulaziz Library and a number of major hotels.
The total space of expropriated property is estimated at 12.5 hectares, with compensations reaching a total value of SR25 billion.
The company implementing the project is preparing the eastern side to take more than 1.8 million worshipers, which is the biggest in the history of the Prophet's Mosque.
Among the many renovations, are the addition of a new building beside the mosque that surrounds it and connects with it from the north, east and west.
Other expansion plans include the establishment of a lower floor to house air conditioning and other equipment.
The project is now in its fourth phase, after the supervising committee finalized assigning properties for the expansion.
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