Confusion over plan for Qatar's tallest tower

EXCLUSIVE: Architect behind Doha skyscraper calls for clarification over project ownership.
Confusion over plan for Qatar's tallest tower
By Alex Delmar-Morgan
Wed 28 Jan 2009 08:46 PM

The architects behind the Dubai Towers in Doha, which will be Qatar's tallest building, are waiting for clarification over whether the project will be passed to a new master developer for completion, Arabian Business can reveal.

The $620 million, 437 metre skyscraper is currently being overseen by Sama Dubai, but architect RMJM understands it may soon be handed over to Dubai Properties. Both developers are part of the Dubai Holding conglomerate.

British architectural practice RMJM has so far failed to establish from Sama who is in charge of the building.

Travis Hemley of RMJM in Dubai told Arabian Business: “We are currently discussing this with the client [Sama], but the client has not confirmed anything.

“It makes us a bit nervous as it is an unprecedented scenario but we don’t have any information right now. The management is actively in talks [with Sama] but nothing has come out of it yet. They are being very tight lipped,” he added.

Dubai Towers is Sama’s flagship development in Qatar and is due for completion in early 2011. At 84 stories it will be the tallest building in the Gulf Arab state, although Hemley said only 15 floors have so far been built.

Sama Dubai, like many other big real estate companies in Dubai, has reigned in its development plans amid the global slowdown.

Earlier in the month, it emerged the developer had shelved its Salam Resort in Bahrain, a luxury seaside project which was expected to cost $545m and put on hold the $534m Dubai Towers scheme in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia.

In November Sama said it was considering axing staff and reviewing its project pipeline.

The company declined to comment.

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