Dubai’s Al Habtoor Group has picked China Railway 18th Bureau to build a $1bn tower in the emirate, saying the contractor stood the best chance of finishing the job in the desired three years.
It said the 81-storey tower will be the biggest residential building in the world, with 1,701 apartments and a total floor area of 325,000 sq m.
Company chairman Khalaf Ahmad Al Habtoor said “our goal is to complete Al Habtoor Tower at the highest quality in record time”.
The 18th Bureau group is a subsidiary of China Railway Construction Corporation. It was chosen from a longlist of 10, which included bidders from Europe, India and the Middle East.
Al Habtoor said it was chosen because it had the necessary technical know-how and a “successful track record in mega projects”.
18th Bureau will use a novel structural method to incorporate a building already on the site.
Al Habtoor said it would have been cheaper to demolish the building but that would have generated more than 3,000 truckloads of waste.
Bavarian piling specialist Bauer was chosen to supply “a unique foundation solution” to support the superstructure. It uses barrettes – a cast-in-situ concrete pile – that is capable of carrying heavy loads. Bauer said they will be more than 90m deep.
Al Habtoor said: “That is why we have opted for the innovative sustainable approach, using a top-down construction method whereby we employ very heavy equipment from Bauer, ranging from 60 to 100 tonnes each, to manoeuvre on top of the current building, reusing the existing structure.”
He added that this would reduce the building’s carbon footprint to less than half of a comparable structure.
18th Bureau general manager Zon Lin said: “You will not be disappointed whatsoever with our promises. We will ‘definitely walk the talk’.”
The tower will form part of Al Habtoor City, launched in 2016. It has three hotels and La Perle, which the company describes as “a world-class unique theatrical experience in a specifically designed state-of-the-art aqua theatre with three deluxe residential towers”.
As well as property development, Al Habtoor Group has interests in the automotive, education, insurance, and publishing sectors.