Sky bridges a good choice

Antony Wood, an expert on tall buildings, has said that the Dubai Marina could lead the way in sustainable urban design by implementing sky bridges between buildings within the development.

Antony Wood
Antony Wood

Antony Wood, an expert on tall buildings, has said that the Dubai Marina could lead the way in sustainable urban design by implementing sky bridges between buildings within the development.

Speaking to Construction Week, Wood, who is also the executive director of Chicago based Council on Tall Buildings and Urban Habitat, said that the use of sky bridges in Dubai Marina would contribute towards increasing its sustainability in a big way.

"I believe that due to Dubai Marina's buildings, which are in very close proximity to each other, it has an opportunity to lead the way for the world in the implementation of sky bridges," he said.

"But to make this happen, it would require very strong collaboration between the individual, the developer and the owners. A set of ground rules will have to be laid down for its implementation but there is nothing to stop it happening. To begin with, they could start with one intense area like the Dubai Marina and then gradually begin to incorporate them into other developments. If done carefully, sky bridges could even be applied to existing buildings.

But he said that if Dubai was to take this step, nothing would happen before the next five to 10 years as the gestation period for tall buildings is a long time.

He added that Dubai had the opportunity to take the lead in this aspect because it did not face space constraints like other skyscraper metropoli like New York or Hong Kong. "Dubai is not Manhattan, which is inserting tall buildings into vacant or what we call ‘brown field' sites. Places like Dubai, China, India and various other cities in the world have this opportunity as well," said Wood.

"They're creating cities from scratch and so they have the opportunity to put in more sustainable infrastructure. For me, sky bridges are one option for sustainable infrastructure.

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