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First gallery constructed at Abu Dhabi Louvre

by Yamurai Zendera on Mar 17, 2014

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Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC), master developer of major tourism, cultural and residential destinations in Abu Dhabi, has completed the construction of the first gallery of Louvre Abu Dhabi.

The building inspired by the orginal in Paris is set for completion by the fourth quarter 2015.

The first completed gallery, which is one of the largest within the permanent galleries, comes a year after mobilisation on the ground had started.

With a transparent glass roof that allows natural light, visitors of Louvre Abu Dhabi will feel the “rain of light” effect across most of its galleries, which comes as a result of the interlaced steel cladding dome of the museum.

TDIC said a significant amount of work is well underway for the construction of the museum’s interior walls, along with the installation of mechanical plant, water pipes, electrical cabling and security systems.

With more than 5,300 workers on site and around 117,000 cubic metres of concrete poured so far, the construction work on the galleries is progressing in parallel with the installation of the museum’s prominent dome, which features 85 steel segments that weigh between 30 to 70 tonnes each. To date, 20% of the dome’s structure has been put in place, with the completion of the full structural steel frame set for September 2014.

Ali Al Hammadi, deputy managing Director at TDIC, said: “We’re happy with where we are today. To date, more than 10 million man hours have been dedicated to Louvre Abu Dhabi reflecting the amount of foundation work that the museum requires. Despite the challenging and complicated design, construction on the ground has been progressing steadily and on schedule. Over the course of one year, we’ve moved from construction at seven metres deep to above ground construction of the galleries.”

The majority of the concrete work for the museum’s basement levels has been completed, including underground buildings, such as the Energy Centre that houses pumps, generators, transformers, and similar building elements and the Security Screening Facility, a highly secure seven-metre deep basement through which authorised vehicles will transport all the artwork for the museum.

Designed by Pritzker-Prize winning architect Jean Nouvel, the Louvre Abu Dhabi will encompass 9,200 square metres of art galleries. The 6,681-square-metre Permanent Gallery will house the museum's permanent collection taking the visitor through a universal journey from the most ancient to contemporary through art works from different civilisations. The Temporary Gallery will be a dedicated space of 2,364 square metres presenting temporary exhibitions of international standards.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi, scheduled for completion in 2015, will be one of the premier cultural institutions located in the heart of the Saadiyat Cultural District. These feature Zayed National Museum, which will open in 2016, and Guggenheim Abu Dhabi, which will open in 2017 - both also designed by world-renowned Pritzker-prize winning architects. All this adds to the appeal of Saadiyat which exudes an exclusive lifestyle through the island’s high-end residential, leisure, cultural and tourism facilities.