The Cultural Village Foundation is an exceptional project of hope for human interaction through art and cultural exchange – a project made possible thanks to the inspired vision, solid faith and wise leadership of HH Sheikh Hamad Bin Khalifa Al Thani, the Father Emir of the State of Qatar. Keeping pace with the emerging global culture that emphasises the importance of diversity in human development, Katara Cultural Village is the largest and the most multidimensional cultural project of Qatar. It is a place where people come together to experience the cultures of the world. With beautiful theatres, concert halls, exhibition galleries and cutting-edge facilities, Katara aims to become a world leader for multi-cultural activities. In line with the goals set forward by the Qatar National Vision 2030, Katara serves as a guardian to the heritage and traditions of Qatar and endeavours to spread awareness about the importance of every culture and civilization and as such, Katara hosts international, regional and local festivals, workshops, performances and exhibitions.
Generally the circulation routes around are good and easy to navigate for all visitor. The main issues may be the cobbles leading from the main car parking areas, as these could be difficult for people using mobility equipment. Where there are level changes, for example at building entrances there are ramps to enable access, generally these are designed well. Well designed ramp access is provided to the mosque within Katara. Ramped access is also provided down to the beach area from a number of locations throughout Katara, once down on the beach there is an accessible footpath to some of the beach and children’s play areas. Access to the golden mosque is currently stepped, however following discussions with Katara Cultural Village, the intention is to ramp this area and provide step free access. The ramp to the upper level of the amphitheatre is long and steep therefore it may be beneficial to indicate this route is only suitable for people who are physically able and highlight the accessible route to the lower level of the amphitheatre. This information should also be available on the official website. The ramp up to Saffron restaurant is narrow and the location of it may be difficult for some people using a wheelchair to negotiate. Redesign of the ramp should be considered during any building maintenance plans. A number of the ramps up to the various buildings do not offer edge protection, which is dangerous for people using wheelchairs and mobility equipment. During any planned maintenance edge protection should be considered.