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World's tallest tower to be completed by 2017

Jeddah's Kingdom Tower to be built in 63 months; faster than the Burj

Kingdom Holding says Jeddah's Kingdom Tower will be built in 63 months. Image: Jeddah Economic Company/Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture.
Kingdom Holding says Jeddah's Kingdom Tower will be built in 63 months. Image: Jeddah Economic Company/Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture.

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Jeddah's Kingdom Tower, set to become the world’s tallest building, will be completed midway through 2017, according to the chairman of one of the major shareholders in the project.

In a statement today, Kingdom Holding's HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal said that the 1,000m+ high skyscraper in the Red Sea port city would be finished “in 63 months”. The final height of the skyscraper has yet to be announced.

If achieved, that will mean the Kingdom Tower will be completed faster than the Burj Khalifa, according to unofficial calculations made by the team at Construction Week. Officially, construction of the Burj started in January of 2004 and finished, officially, with a grand opening ceremony in January 2010.

That’s six years or, with a couple of extra days for leap years, 2,192 days of official construction activity; or 2.64 days per metre of completed building. If the Kingdom Tower is completed within the stated timeframe, that would equate to around 1.9 days per metre of completed building.

If construction advances at the same rate it did for the Burj Khalifa, it will take 2,642 days, or 7.24 years for Kingdom Tower to reach 1001 metres and be complete.

KINGDOM TOWER SPECIAL ISSUE  | PICTURES | VIDEO: Kingdom Tower architect talks

Kingdom Holding also announced that construction giants and holding company the Saudi Bin Laden Group has bought a 16.63% stake in the project for $400m (SAR1.5bn).

Prince Alwaleed’s Kingdom Holding has a 33.35% stake in Jeddah Economic Company, the firm set up to build the Kingdom Tower project.

The other shareholders are Abraar International Holding Company, also with 33.35%, and Jeddah businessman Abdulrahman Hassan Sharbatly with 16.67%.

Kingdom Holding said today that the final license from Jeddah municipality to build the Kingdom Tower was formally received on February 19.

The mixed use development will have a total construction area of more than 500,000m2 and will house a Four Seasons hotel, serviced apartments, office space, luxury condominiums and the world’s highest observation deck.

Kingdom Tower will form part of the wider Kingdom City project, a 20ha, $20bn (SAR75bn) development which will include a number of other residential and commercial buildings.

On completion, Kingdom Tower will trump Dubai's 828m Burj Khalifa to become the tallest free-standing structure in the world.

It may not hold the record for long however, with an Azerbaijani firm recently announcing plans to build a 1,050m structure in the Caspian Sea nation's capital Baku.

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Construction Week - Issue 747
Aug 03, 2019