Burj 2020: Designing the world’s tallest commercial tower in Dubai
Final design bids are to be reviewed and a winner announced shortly for Burj 2020
Dubai: The design and identity of the architectural firm for the world’s tallest all-commercial tower in the making — Burj 2020 — could be confirmed in a matter of weeks. “The competition (for submission of bids) is about to close and only then will details such as the final height would revealed,” said Krysta Fox, Director at DMCC Free Zone, which will be the master-developer of the tower as well as the Burj 2020 District of which it will be the focal point.
The District itself will take up a massive 107,000 square metres and open up a substantial new supply of office stock over the medium term. Among the existing tallest office towers, Tokyo Skytree, completed in 2010, takes pride of place at 634 metres high. It cost more than $800 million to build. It is followed by Taipei 101, at 509 metres high. While building the world’s tallest commercial tower was in DMCC’s sights for some time, the announcement that Dubai would host the World Expo 2020 was the inspiration for its eventual choice of name. The topmost floor is to double up as an observation deck.
DMCC also built and owns Almas Tower in JLT, which currently ranks 14th in the list of the world’s tallest office structures. It is 363 metres high. It was not revealed as to how many contenders have put their hats in the ring to win the design honour for the Burj 2020. The Burj 2020 District master plan bidding process involved four firms. Recently, it was confirmed that Turner International will assume the role of project manager for the development. The groundbreaking is scheduled for next year at a location which will be close to the JLT cluster.
While the countdown for the design — and height — revelation for the Burj 2020 ticks along, that for the world’s tallest twin towers will have to wait awhile. It was last month that confirmation was had that the Lagoons District will play host to the twin tower structure which would aim to take away the record from the current holder, the Petronas Towers in Malaysia (452 metres high).
“The combination of DMCC and sub-developers coming out with new projects is directly related to the forces of supply and demand,” said Fox. “DMCC directly owns five of the towers at JLT, including the prestigious Almas Tower. The free zone now has a 70 per cent occupancy by commercial tenants across the 38 wholly or partially commercial towers.
“But we have been receiving 200 applications by prospective commercial tenants each month and that requires we start building for the future. And we remain a destination for large companies and SMEs alike, with rentals starting from Dh40 a square foot to around Dh200.”