By Joel Scanlon
HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, Kingdom Holding Company’s Chairman declared that the agreement for building Kingdom Tower the tallest tower in the world has been contracted on August 2, 2011.
The tower with a height of more than 1,000 meters will be constructed at Kingdom City, more than 5.3 million m2 new urban development of Jeddah Economic Company located in the north of Jeddah facing Obhur Creek and the Red Sea.
Kingdom Tower, World's Tallest Building, to Begin Construction in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. (Credit: Kingdom Holding Company)
The Kingdom Tower with a total built area of more than 500,000.m2 will offer mixed-use of construction. The tower will feature luxury dwelling units, office space, Four Seasons serviced apartments and Four Seasons hotel. The tower will also host an observatory that will remain taller than any other observation deck in the world. The total construction cost of the tower is anticipated to be $1.2 billion and the Kingdom City project is developed at a cost of $20 billion.
The design of Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture, a Chicago based company has been selected in May 2009 for the Kingdom Tower in a competition in which leading companies such as Foster + Partners, Pelli Clarke Pelli, Kohn Pedersen Fox, Pickard Chilton, and SOM participated. Presently the company has completed the schematic design and is in the process of design development. It has completed foundation drawings and tender for piling is being floated. The company also has provided the master plan for the Water Front District of Kingdom Tower surrounding the tower which includes quality outdoor spaces, a shopping mall, commercial and residential constructions and other conveniences. HOK Architects have provided the master plan for the total Kingdom City construction.
The tower design will incorporate all technical advancements and innovative design strategies for energy conservation. Its exterior wall system will cut down energy consumption by bringing down thermal loads. The series of notches planned on the three sides of the tower will induce pockets of shadow to protect from the sun and to offer classic view of Red Sea and the city of Jeddah. The tower will incorporate a total of 59 elevators which includes five double deck and 54 single-deck elevators and 12 escalators. The elevators connected to the observatory will move at 10 m/s speed in both ways.