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Work in Progress: Silverine

by Orlando Crowcroft on Nov 16, 2010

Cayan's Silverine twin towers include luxury flats and retail and were designed by consultants RMJM
Cayan's Silverine twin towers include luxury flats and retail and were designed by consultants RMJM
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It has been six months since the Silverine Twin Towers in Dubai Marina was topped out by developer Cayan.

Back then, as now, the project was defying the stagnant market in Dubai and racing ahead of its deadline, with the developer able to announced that structural work at Silverine had been completed 90 days ahead of schedule.

Right now, main contractor Arabtec Construction is overseeing the fit out of the US $173.69 million (AED638million) tower project, which was due to be completed in October but is likely to now run a little later in the year. RMJM project architect Eugene de Villiers explained that it was the space, rather than the climate, that was holding Silverine up.

“We’re a few months from the handover. We are doing pretty well with the towers at the moment but the podium is slower, and that is holding us back,” he said.

The site was an inevitable challenge for RMJM and Arabtec, with the location in the heart of Dubai Marina and intersected by two major routes to and from the beach. This had led the contractor to use the podium area of the project to store materials while working on the tower.

“It is a slightly congested site, which is why we were using the podium for storage. Other than that it was a pretty straightforward building. Very good facades, easy to procure and not too challenging,” he said.

“It also has to be said that having a good contractor kept us on target,” he added.

Speaking to Construction Week in July, developer Cayan also paid tribute to Arabtec, as well as to its dedicated workforce, which has allowed the project to stay on target.

“We are dedicated and we were one of the only projects running 24-hours a day with an amazing workforce. Cayan promised to deliver an A-class project and Arabtec has helped us do this,” CEO Kareem Derbas said.

Villiers added that the market in Dubai two years ago had made the tendering process fairly difficult, with prices changing by as much as 15% week-on-week. That said, the project actually benefitted from the crash that followed in Dubai and prices fell accordingly.

“We’ve had to make some compromises, but the fact that the market sank actually worked in the client’s favour,” he said.
The Silverine Tower A clocks in at 35-storeys, while Tower B is 27. The buildings comprise one-, two- and three-bedroom apartments, duplexes and penthouses. Linking the two buildings is a three-storey podium offering two floors of retail outlets.

In the current climate, some may question whether there is a demand for more apartments in the high-end residential sector, but in an interview earlier this year, Cayan chief development officer Ahmad Kasem said: “Over-supply and lower demand will never stop us from developing our projects because we ensure that there is a need for them,” he said.