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Ithra Dubai invests US$1 billion to develop One Za’abeel project

October 28, 2020

Dubai, UAE: Ithra Dubai is investing in access of US$1 billion (Dh3.67 billion) to deliver One Zabeel project close to Dubai World Trade Centre, a top official told Gulf Property during a media tour of the project that spreads across two towers separated by an elevated highway but connected by a skybridge called The Link that is hanging 125 metres above the ground that might be the world’s ‘Longest Cantilevered Building’ if certified by the Guinness World Records.

Issam Galadari, Director and CEO of Ithra Dubai, said, “The cost of developing the project could exceed US$1 billion, when complete. This is a prestigious project and it will add to Dubai’s growing number of landmark projects as it is a unique project in many ways, especially with the world’s longest skybridge connecting the two towers about 125 metres above the ground. You do not see these things in buildings.

“The completion of The Link at One Za’abeel is the sum of effort, imagination, collaboration and the desire to create a meaningful and timeless contribution to Dubai. We are thrilled to be part of the city’s narrative and to join its long list of firsts.”

The giant steel fabricated link structure, constructed by Sharjah-based Eversendai for main contractor ALEC, is now finalised after completing all construction milestones, reaching its final length of 226 meters and standing 125 meters above ground level. The innovative and complex cantilever now stands at a total height of 125 metres after a four-day lift which started on October 21st.  The Link went through a final alignment during the week, as part of which the cantilever was welded into the towers on which it is placed.

The lift of The Link was operated in two phases, the first of which took place in September when the first structure of The Link measuring 192 meters was lifted 100 meters above ground level. It was carried out over 12 days in one of the heaviest lifting operations in the region, weighing over 8,500 tonnes. The final lift joined the cantilevered structure with the first section of The Link and was executed over the course of four days. More than 55 jacks and strand jacks, and 12.2 kilometres of strands were required to lift this final portion weighing over 900 tonnes.

Once operational, the panoramic 140-metre-long sky concourse is set to become the World’s Longest Cantilevered Building and the ultimate destination for discerning travellers and residents alike. Visitors will enjoy immersive experiences in addition to ultra-luxurious hospitality and entertainment venues and the ultimate in fine dining including Michelin-star restaurants, an infinity pool, a luxury spa and an observation deck offering panoramic views of Za’abeel Park, Downtown Dubai, Dubai Creek, Burj Khalifa and the dual carriageway below that goes through the two towers. 

One Za’abeel by Ithra Dubai is an ambitious enterprise that combines the best in design, architecture and civil engineering. The iconic development is built with connectivity in mind as it intersects between Dubai’s International Financial Centre and the International Airport. Its world-class offerings will redefine mixed-use developments in the region with the finest in residential, office, and retail spaces and the world’s first vertical urban resort under the One & Only brand. The multi-award-winning project also aims to achieve Gold LEED certification.

One Za’abeel is just as impressive below ground, going down 38.5 metres and spanning 7 floors the basement will be in the deepest in the Middle East, using the space for over 2500 car parks, storage and maintenance rooms – maximizing above ground efficiency. The enabling works for the basement took 24 months to complete, and the unprecedented depth required new techniques to dehydrate, cure and stabilise the concrete. The two towers and associated basements are connected by two underground tunnels at basement 2 and basement 1 levels. The design and construction of the Tunnel was complicated due to the proximity with the existing overhead highway bridge piers and its foundations.

The two towers will rise up to 300 and 235 metres, respectively. The residential tower will be 54 floors high with 145 simplex and duplex apartments. The second tower will be 67 floors and will host an ultra-luxury hotel, serviced apartments, offices and the Investment Corporation of Dubai’s new HQ. The two towers will have 7 basement levels and a four level podium above ground which will house retail, restaurants, social space and conference halls. Above the podium, the towers will be connected by the 228 m link bridge with 66 m-long cantilever link, which will be 100 metres above ground, and 87 metres above the elevated  highway running between the towers. 

Kez Taylor, Chief Executive Officer of ALEC, said: “We have witnessed the impossible come to life through ‘The Link’. Throughout the four-day process this month our team continuously monitored the structural behaviour of ‘The Link’ and the Towers, reassuring the design’s integrity and strength. It has been a great privilege for ALEC to work on such an innovative and breath-taking design, and we are humbled to be part of an engineering project that solidifies Dubai’s reputation as a centre of innovation and excellence. One Za’abeel is a development that has already earned its reputation as an iconic structure within Dubai’s world-class skyline and we look forward to a successful top out in the months to come.”

Approximately 16,100 cubic metres of concrete was poured continuously for the 3.5m deep Tower A raft foundation. Intensive planning and detailed coordination by the project team with local authorities ensured the pour went ahead as scheduled. The milestone was completed in under 72 hours, with an impressive rate of 32m3 per hour with eight pumps in use.

One Za’abeel will be completed in stages starting Q4 2021.