Archive for February, 2012
The dramatic downturn in the pace of construction in Dubai has left some ironic artifacts arounds town. In a dusty plot on the fringes of the city, an entire fleet of foreign worker buses, construction and executive vehicles once belonging to the Robust Construction Company lies abandoned to the elements.
Also completed in Abu Dhabi, Captial Gate designed by RMJM stands adjacent to ADNEC (Abu Dhabi National Exhibition Center). The 35 story tower leans 18 degrees to the west as it rises, making it, according to the erstwhile Guinness Book of Records, the world’s furthest leaning man-made tower. All I know is that it played havoc with figuring out the levels on my camera.
At one point in time, Raha Beach, stretching eastward along the Arabian Gulf from Abu Dhabi, was nominated as the largest construction site on the planet. Projects such as Ferrari World and the Yas Island Formula One Grand Prix Circuit justifiably captured the the world’s attention. While several other projects have since completed, when driving around the area recently, it soon became apparent that many of the cranes were either stationary, or gone altogether.
The remarkable Aldar HQ Building challenges the imagination but is still surrounded by great swathes of raw earth. Add a strong crosswind, raining punishing showers of grit and grime upon all in its path and you begin to wonder whether it’s all a strange mirage.
Rubbing your eyes and getting closer to the building only heightens the sense of the surreal.
Still in Singapore, the final phase of Kohn Pedersen Fox’s Marina Bay Financial Center is nearing completion. Continuing the expansion of Singapore’s central business district around towards the Marina Bay Sands, the deep blue glazed MBFC project includes a large public open space that will become a focal point for both business and residential communities alike.
The addition of a third office tower and a second residential tower to the waterside cluster brings with it an extra burst of activity in the public plaza linking the various ground level lobbies and subterranean retail center.
Out in equatorial Singapore, where even the buildings seem to wilt in the humidity, the prolific Daniel Libeskind recently completed his largest residential project to date. Reflections at Keppel Bay is located on the southern side of Singapore, with views across to the new theme park skyline of Sentosa and beyond to the South China Sea.
Comprising six high rise towers ranging from 24 to 41 stories and 11 low rise blocks of 6-8 floors, the development delivered a total of 1,129 units.