Mecca is getting ready for a new season of Umrah and Hajj

Deputy Governor of Mecca

On the threshold of the Holy month of Ramadan, Al-Masjid Al-Haram (the holly mosque) is getting ready to welcome Muslims from around the world. The deputy governor of Mecca inspected yesterday, Tuesday the readiness of the Holy Mosque after the completion of the new third-floor extension works.

The Holy Mosque in Mecca is the largest mosque in the world— over 1.8 billion Muslims from all over the world are obligated to perform Hajj to, the annual pilgrimage and the fifth pillar of Islam, at least once in their lifetime.

The expansion works is a $100 billion effort to raise the capacity of the mosque to accommodate 2.5 million worshippers by 2020—the third floor extension works have recently completed and the Holy Mosque is ready to welcome visitors and Umrah performers during Ramadan, Badr bin Sultan, the deputy governor of Mecca confirmed.

This came after an inspection tour, in which he, accompanied by a number of officials, checked the latest redevelopment works being carried out in the northern squares of the Holy Mosque including the extension works, squares, terraces, and “Jerwal” tunnel, which shortens the route to the Holy Mosque by 3000 m and facilitates reaching King Abdullah’s expansion from Jarul district without congestion. It is one-kilometer-long and sixteen-meter-wide, including 9 meters for pedestrians. What best distinguishes the tunnel are the safety, ventilation, and fire-fighting systems, parking lots, as well as toilets and ablution spaces for men and women.

He also checked other facilities—the King Abdul-Aziz Gate, including the completion of finishing works, electrical wiring, and water networks. The King Abdul-Aziz Gate project consists of 5 floors and technical means to help crowd management, 137-meter-long minarets, and instructional screens.

He further checked the southern Al-Mukabariah, the central auditorium of the Holy Mosque where prayer announcers call for the Islamic five prayers. All civil works were completed and the facade covered with marble. He was also briefed on the progress of Waqf King Abdul-Aziz Traffic Station, which is the second largest transport station in Mecca. It contributes to the transport of 50,000 passengers per hour between Kudai and the southern courtyard of the Grand Mosque by more than 130 buses.