RIYADH: Saudi Crown Prince has announced a historic expansion project for Quba Mosque, the first mosque built by Prophet Muhammed (PBUH), which will increase its size tenfold.
According to Saudi Press Agency, the crown prince visited the mosque where he offered prayers and made the announcement. The new project, according to Arab News, will mean the mosque will see the largest development in its history, expanding to 50,000 square meters.
The project aims to increase the mosque’s capacity to 66,000 worshipers to accommodate a large number of worshipers during peak season as the kingdom prepares for a massive number of pilgrims after COVID-19 restrictions are lifted.
The expansion project, named after King Salman, will ensure the mosque’s religious importance is highlighted while maintaining its architectural style.
Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman said the project seeks to accommodate the largest number of worshipers during peak seasons. It also aims to highlight the mosque’s religious importance while preserving its architectural style, as well as monuments located near the mosque. There will be shaded courtyards on four sides, which will connect to prayer spaces that are not structurally attached to the current mosque building.
He said the project enhances the efficiency of the landmark for visitors’ devotional and cultural experience. The project will aim to solve overcrowding and enhance the safety of worshipers, and the road system nearby will see a revamp to ease access to the mosque.
Rehabilitation work will mean a number of sites and prophetic monuments within the mosque and its courtyards are preserved.
As many as 57 sites, including wells, farms and orchards, are to be developed or rehabilitated as part of the project. The crown prince commended the king’s care for the historic mosque, and said the project sets out to achieve the goals and objectives of the Saudi Vision 2030.
During his visit to Madinah, Prince Mohammed prayed at the Prophet’s Mosque. He also prayed at the Rawdah, a place lies between the Sacred Chamber (known as the Prophet’s house), and the Prophet’s Minbar (or pulpit).
The crown prince was accompanied by Prince Faisal bin Salman, Governor of Madinah, and a number of senior officials. He received prominent scholars and excellencies, and a group of citizens who came to greet him, at Taiba Palace in Madinah.
Quba Mosque’s history
Located 5kms south of the Prophet’s Mosque in Madina, it is the first mosque in the history of Islam. It was built in the year 1 AH (622 AD).
According to the Arab News report, “there will be shaded courtyards on four sides, which will connect to prayer spaces that are not structurally attached to the current mosque building.”
The crown prince said the project aims to enhance the efficiency of the landmark for visitors’ devotional and cultural experience. It will also solve the overcrowding issue and enhance the safety of worshipers.
Key facts about Quba Mosque
Quba mosque has a special and unique place in the hearts of Muslims due to its association with the prophet Muhammed -peace be upon him- as it is the first mosque ever built.
It is also known to be the second largest and prominent mosque in Madina after the Prophet’s Mosque. It is considered by many to be the third most sacred shrine in Saudi Arabia, and an all-but-mandatory stop for pilgrims visiting Madina.
According to several sources, 622 AD was the founding date of the mosque right after prophet Muhammed arrived on his emigration from holy capital of Saudi Arabia, Makkah.
Quba Mosque is located on the outskirts of Madina, where the prophet used to go to Cuba Mosque every Saturday, “The Prophet used to go to the Mosque of Quba every Saturday (sometimes) walking and (sometimes) riding,” Ibn ‘Umar (may Allah be pleased with him) said narrated by Abdullah bin Dinar.Among many prestigious characteristics of Quba Mosque, Prophet Muhammed said: “Whoever makes ablutions in this house and offers one prayer therein, will be rewarded the equivalent of one Umrah.”
Many interpretations say that the following verse was said in reference to Quba Mosque: “A mosque founded on righteousness from the first day is more worthy for you to stand in. Within it are men who love to purify themselves; and Allah loves those who purify themselves.” Surah Tawbah [9:108].
The first renovation was made by the third Caliph Uthman Ibn Affan. Umayyad Caliph Omar bin Abdul Aziz built the first minaret of the mosque. Abu Yali Al-Husaini renovated the mosque again in 435 A.H. He constructed a prayer place known as the “Mihrab”, also known as a prayer niche.
There are 7 major entrances and 12 supplementary ones. The mosque is cooled by three middle units, each with a capability of one million and eighty thousand cooling units.
The northern section is reserved for women worshippers. The mosque now has four minarets and 56 domes connected to a house of Imams and muezzins, a library, a place for the guards in a part of 112 sq. meters, and a marketable center with 12 shops covering an area of 450 sq. meters. The mosque has 64 toilets for men and 32 toilets for women, and 42 units for ablution.