Saturday, December 13, 2008

Nakheel receives bids for Tall Tower

Published: 12 December 2008 12:48 GMT Author: Colin Foreman More by this Author Last Updated: 12 December 2008 12:48

Three groups submit proposals for 10-year project to build AED30bn landmark skyscraper in Dubai.

Local developer Nakheel has received proposals from three groups for the contract to build the tower at the AED140bn ($38bn) Nakheel Harbour and Tower development in Dubai.

The bidders are a joint venture of the local/Australian Al-Habtoor Leighton, South Africa's Murray & Roberts Contractors (Middle East) and Japan's Takenaka Corporation; the UK's Laing O'Rourke in joint venture with Japan's Taisei Corporation; and South Korea's Samsung Corporation (MEED 18:11:08).

Samsung is also part of a joint venture that is building the Burj Dubai, along with the local/Belgian Bel Hasa Six Construct and the local Arabtec Construction.

The AED30bn Nakheel tower will be developed over 10 years. The client plans to shortlist two groups by the end of the year and select one to provide pre-construction services by early 2009. The pre-construction period is expected to last at least one year. Enabling works on the development, which are scheduled to be completed in October 2010, are being executed by France's Soletanche Bachy. Work on the tower's superstructure is expected to follow shortly after.

In June, sources close to the project said the tower had been designed to be 1.4 kilometres tall. However, Nakheel has only confirmed that it will be more than 1km high. Even so, once finished, it will be taller than the Burj Dubai, which is expected to be about 820 metres high when completed in 2009.

The Nakheel tower was originally called the Pinnacle and was to be located on the Palm Jumeirah, before becoming part of the Dubai Waterfront scheme, when it was renamed Al-Burj. It is now known as the Tall Tower.

The consultancy team for the tower includes UK-based WSP, US-based Leslie E Robertson Associates and Australia's Woods Bagot.

The development will be built alongside the proposed Arabian Canal next to Ibn Battuta Mall and Jumeirah islands.

It will cover an area of 2.7 square kilometres and will be home to more than 55,000 people. The development will also include 250,000 sq m of hotel and hospitality space, and 100,000 sq m of retail space.

The scheme was launched in October 2008 but, given the global economic climate, doubts soon surfaced over whether it would move ahead. Nakheel has already begun to delay work on some of its other projects, such as Palm Deira and Dubai Waterfront, Gateway Towers and Trump International Hotel and Tower.

However, the developer's decision to move ahead with the Tall Tower is the latest sign that some major schemes will proceed.

The Al-Habtoor/Murray & Roberts/Takaneka joint venture was recently awarded the AED4.9bn ($1.3bn) contract to build Concourse 3 at Dubai International airport (MEED 8:12:08).

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