Dubai has appointed Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava for the design of a new high rise tower next to Dubai Creek.

The appointment was approved by Vice President and Prime Minister and Ruler of Dubai Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum on 6 February.

The design is reportedly inspired by Islamic architecture and meets requirements of modern times, as well as local environment and culture. Calatrava’s design was selected ahead of five other proposals.

It is understood that the tower will be part of the Dubai Creek Harbour development that is being developed by Emaar Properties and Dubai Holding in the Ras al-Khor area. The 6 square kilometre master development is similar in scale to Emaar’s Downtown district, which is home to the world’s tallest building, the Burj Khalifa.

Development at the Dubai Creek Harbour has accelerated this year. Emaar has awarded the local Al-Basti & Muktha (ABM) a contract to build its Dubai Creek Residences towers.

The project involves the construction of six residential towers that form part of The Island District. Emaar received offers last year. The project is scheduled for handover in 2018.

MEED also reported in January that Emaar had appointed UK-based Faithful+Gould as the programme manager for the development.

Tall towers make a comeback

No one understands the value of tall buildings better than Dubai

 Burj Khalifa cover

Burj Khalifa cover

Local developer Emaar Properties’ chairman Mohammed Alabbar has described that before the Burj Khalifa was launched in 2003, he proposed a 90-storey tower that was promptly dismissed by Dubai’s ruler, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, who then was still the crown prince of Dubai.

Alabbar says he then commissioned a design that was more than 40 per cent taller than anything else in the world at the time. When he presented it again to Sheikh Mohammed, the answer was simply: “When can I see cranes on the site?”

Altogether, Dubai has 18 completed towers that are taller than 300 metres, with most opening between 2008 and 2013, as projects awarded during the emirate’s 2003-08 construction boom were completed. The most active contractors in the high-rise sector were Lebanon’s Arabian Construction Company (ACC), which has completed five 300-metre-plus towers, and Canada’s Brookfield Multiplex, which has finished four 300-metre-plus schemes. Read More.