The Kingdom Tower in Jeddah would be the first of a breed of ultra-tall buildings to exceed 900 metres in height. That's more than twice as tall as New York's Empire State Building.United Technologies' Otis Elevator, Switzerland-based Schindler Group and Finland's Kone are racing to perfect technologies ranging from stronger brakes to smarter software to move elevator riders more efficiently and capture the market.
Tall towers have come to symbolise the excesses of the boom years. The focus must be on city centres instead. Makkah’s Clock Royal Tower, the world’s second tallest tower at 577 metres, is scheduled to be complete in August this year. If the project meets its completion deadline, it comes just eight months after the opening of the world’s tallest tower, Dubai’s 828-metre Burj Khalifa.
The completion of the world’s tallest building, the Burj Dubai, made scores of international headlines this week. Among those who took part in the huge project in the United Arab Emirates was a Czech firm called Pega Hoist, whose high-speed construction elevators were used throughout the building stage.
Hundreds of architects, engineers and consultants packed out Dubai’s Park Hyatt last night for the third annual Middle East Architect awards. Projects from Saudi Arabia to Libya scooped awards, with Dubai’s Burj Khalifa winning project of the year and local firm X Architects winning both Best Boutique Firm and Best Principal, jointly awarded to founders Ahmed Al Ali and Farid Esmaeil.
The new channel will go live within the coming weeks and will have its official launch at the Armani Hotel, Dubai, on 24 November in the presence of a host of television stars and celebrities from the Arab world. The Arabic-language station is to broadcast 24 hours and will focus primarily on soap operas and drama, including programmes from Egypt, Syria and the Gulf.
Commissioned by SOM and EMAAR Properties, ‘World Voices' is explained by Plensa as such: "The residential lobby area of Burj Khalifa is a meeting place of diverse cultures and nationalities - a metaphor of the diversity of our global society. World Voices is homage to this diversity and a celebration of life."