The GCC’s most prestigious projects received the region’s top honours for projects excellence at the 2016 MEED Quality Awards for Projects held in association with Mashreq in Dubai on 25 May.

Saudi Arabia was the standout performer, picking up five awards, followed by the UAE and Oman with three apiece. Bahrain and Qatar collected two awards each, while Kuwait received one trophy at this year’s edition of the annual awards programme, the only one to recognise completed projects in the GCC.

“We are proud to support the awards programme for the past four years now,” says John Iossifidis, executive vice-president and head of the corporate and investment banking group at the UAE’s Mashreq bank. “The awards have definitely shed the spotlight not just on excellence and quality, but also on the award-winning projects’ valuable contribution to the economic development of the region; and the long-term viability of the projects sector by sending a clear message to the market, that quality is essential in all parts of the project management process; from design planning to engineering and construction. We wish all participants all the very best.”

Most coveted trophy

The award programme’s most coveted trophy – the MEED Quality Project of the Year 2016, in association with Mashreq – went to Saudi Aramco’s King Abdullah Petroleum Studies & Research Centre (Kapsarc) project (nominated by the UAE’s Drake & Scull), which was also awarded the title GCC Sustainable Project of the Year, sponsored by Belgium’s Six Construct.

Saudi Arabia’s other double winner was the Yanbu Aramco Sinopec Refining Company (Yasref) refinery project. The ambitious energy scheme won the GCC Oil & Gas Project of the Year award, sponsored by the US’ Parsons, and the GCC Mega Project of the Year honours. Yasref is a joint venture of Saudi Aramco (62.5 per cent) and China’s Sinopec (37.5 per cent).

Completing the kingdom’s five-trophy haul was the Rehabilitation, Expansion and Development of the Prince Mohammed bin Abdulaziz International airport scheme in Medina, which won the GCC Airport Project of the Year category. Nominated by Turkey’s TAV Construction, the project is owned by Saudi Arabia’s General Authority of Civil Aviation (Gaca), represented by Tibah Airports Development Company.

The UAE’s successful projects included the Taweelah Aluminum Extrusion Plant Project for Talex – a joint venture between Senaat, the industrial arm of the Abu Dhabi government and Gulf Extrusions of Dubai’s Al-Ghurair Group (nominated by the US’ Aecom) – which won the GCC Industrial Project of the Year.

Best rail scheme

The Zoo & Aquarium Public Institution in Al Ain’s Wildlife Park & Resort (AWPP) – World Deserts Project (nominated by Abu Dhabi’s Hilal Bil Badi & Partners Contracting Company) – was selected as the region’s best Social, Culture & Heritage Project. The GCC Rail Project of the Year honour was given to Etihad Rail Stage 1 – Shah?Habshan?Ruwais Railway Project (nominated by the US’ Parsons and Italy’s Saipem).

Oman also provided several successful projects for this year’s MEED Quality Awards for Projects. The Public Authority for Electricity & Water’s Construction of Emergency Water Storage Reservoirs Project (nominated by the sultanate’s Al-Hassan Engineering Company) won the GCC Power & Water Project of the Year.

Muscat Municipality’s Design & Construction of Underpasses & Flyovers Darsait-Al-Wadi Al-Kabir Road Project (nominated by India’s Larsen & Toubro’s Oman subsidiary) won the GCC Road & Bridge Project of the Year.

The final winner from the sultanate was Al-Taher Group Company’s Oman Avenues Mall Extension to Lulu Hypermarket in Bausher – Stage 2 Project (nominated by SAM Engineering), which received the GCC Retail Project of the Year award.

Qatar projects figured prominently in two categories: Qatar Foundation’s headquarters project won the GCC Building Project of the Year; and Al-Rayyan Hospitality’s Banana Island Resort Doha by Anantara scheme (nominated by UrbaCon Trading & Contracting) scooped up the GCC Leisure & Tourism Project of the Year award.

Bahrain-based projects received the region’s top honour in two categories, with Bahrain Property Musharaka Trust’s Danaat al-Madina project (nominated by Eskan Properties Company) receiving the GCC Mixed-Use Project of the Year award; and the Ministry of Youth & Sports Affairs’ Demolishing and Rebuild of Hala Club scheme winning the GCC Small Project of the Year.

Kuwait won one of the new award categories introduced this year: the GCC Residential Project of the Year, sponsored by VitrA, which went to the Wall House Project (nominated by AGi Architects).

Editor’s award

The MEED Editor’s Special Commendation was presented to two schemes that required innovation to improve energy efficiency. Dubai Electricity & Water Authority (Dewa) was commended for its Thermal Energy Storage Turbine Inlet Air Cooling (TESTIAC) project and Saudi Arabia’s Maaden Gold and Base Metals Company’s Ad’Duwieh Gold Project Electrical Distribution and E House Project (nominated by Schneider Electric) also received the special acknowledgement.

Now in its sixth year, the MEED Quality Awards for Projects in association with Mashreq has established itself as the leading stamp of quality and achievement for stakeholders in the GCC projects sector. It is supported by Mashreq bank (headline sponsor), Six Construct (Gold and Category Sponsor), Parsons and VitrA (Silver and Category Sponsors) and Al-Shafar General Contracting (Reception Sponsor).

Part of the MEED Construction Leadership Summit, the awards not only recognise the construction element of project delivery but also consider the value and quality of a project throughout its entire life cycle, from the design concept through to engineering and construction and its wider contribution to society and the environment.

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