Deputy Minister of Municipal and Rural Affairs Dr Habib Mustafa Zainal-Abdin has confirmed that work on the expansion of the Jamarat terracing in Mina will start in February, 2005. The ministry, he said, has completed studies on the project, which will be implemented in four phases within five years, and which aims to facilitate the stoning ritual during the Hajj pilgrimage and increase capacity at the Jamarat site to 500,000 pilgrims per hour.
The first Jamarat expansion was carried out in 1975 when the current terrace was constructed. It accommodates about 80,000 pilgrims per hour, and 100,000 in very crowded situations. The aim of the new project is to develop the whole area, with two new entrances from the Makkah side. Pilgrims coming from Aziziya will go straight to the second floor, while those coming from the north will be routed to the third floor and those from the south to the fourth floor.