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Wed 14 Jan 2009 07:10 AM

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Work on Nakheel Tower 'stopped for 12 months'

Construction workers laid off with delays on world's tallest building project - report.

Construction work on the Nakheel Tower in Dubai, destined to become the world’s tallest when completed, has been stopped for a year, it was revealed on Wednesday.

Several labourers working on the ambitious project have been laid off as progress has been "stopped until further notice".

“Further work on the foundations of Nakheel Harbour and Tower will commence in 12 months. The foundation works are likely to take approximately three years to complete,” a Nakheel spokesman said in comments published by UAE daily The National.

A senior project manager told the paper that several employees had lost their jobs because “work has stopped until further notice”.

The tower plan is set to be the centrepiece of a 270-hectare marina development called Nakheel Harbour and Tower near Ibn Battuta Mall and the Arabian Canal in Dubai.

With 200 floors and 150 lifts, it is expected to soar to more than 1km high and take 10 years to complete in phases.

Nakheel announced late last year that it was delaying several of its flagship projects, including the Trump International Hotel and Tower, in addition to axing 500 jobs amid the global financial crisis.

The developer said the Frond N villas, Gateway Towers and the Trump tower on the Palm Jumeirah, one of three palm-shaped islands the developer is building off Dubai's coast, would all be delayed.

The company said much of its Waterfront project, a series of man-made islands set to be twice the size of Hong Kong, would also be pushed back.

Nakheel said work would continue on Madinat Al Arab, Venetto, Badra and the Canal District, but areas of the project, including construction of six man-made islands, would be put on hold.

The Universe, a series of man-made islands in the shape of the sun, the moon and the planets that wraps around Nakheel's The World project, has been delayed, the company said, with work restricted to preliminary engineering studies.

On the Palm Jebel Ali, the second largest of the three Palm islands, Nakheel said work on the fond villas and infrastructure for the crescent would continue, while other phases would be delayed.

It did not give details of how long any of its projects would be delayed for.

Nakheel said work on all other projects - which include The World man-made archipelago and Palm Deira, the largest of the Palm islands - would continue as planned.

The UAE's construction and real estate industry has been hit hard with Aldar Laing O’Rourke, a joint venture between Abu Dhabi’s largest developer and a British construction company, announcing last week it was cutting up to 250 jobs because of the changed economic environment.

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SR 10 years ago

If I recall correctly, this was launched during Cityscape; 1st week of October. Just three months down the road, "delayed for 01 year" (or is it indefinitely??). Any company strategy starts with an analysis of external factors (market, competition etc.), that is basic. Nakheel does not seem to have done any such analysis in this case.

Addy 10 years ago

Well, I agree with the other comment regd. the study on industry and feasibility beofre launching such a massive project. This is really shame ful. In OCt-08, things were pretty clear that we have in for next 2 years. even a barber was talking about recession. So, good luck to all the hefty pay taker CA qualified Manager and Analyst. As far as Nakheel goes, i think they shoudl seriuoly re-design their business model.

Hate Universe 10 years ago

We all welcome if Nakheel cancel Universe project. That is one piece of ugly work i have ever seen. Why why why on earth would u want to overdo things? Palm and World is elite and classic, universe is somethgn like a kids thought.... gggrrrr.... Less is more... dont overdo nakheel... concentrate on international city sewage problems before u create more...

paul 10 years ago

Like I said when it was announced - IT WILL NEVER BE BUILT! Nakheel's absurd spin at the time, and the chorus of approval from Dubai fanboys at the time was quite laughable to anyone who looked at the financial landscape. The building is an anachronism already, something that belongs in the bubble era that ran up until mid-2008. The fact it is a 1-year delay will not doubt be spun positively. But work will not commence for at least 5 years, and probably never. The era of absurd schemes like this is over and the sooner Dubai switches its attention to proper sewage works, proper public transport and other essential but unglamorous infrastructure, the sooner it can get back to being a sustainable, growing city.

Paul King 10 years ago

Construction work has stopped for 1 year! I think they've missed a zero there. It'll be more like 10! Do Nakheel seriously think the economic conditions will be any brighter in one year's time. They must be dreaming... This is an economic meltdown and will last for 5/6 years yet. This is not a crisis... It's a correction and the new conditions should be welcomed as the new "normal!"

Brendan 10 years ago

It's apparent that Nakheel's strategic planning is rather a short term make a quick buck ideal. From the ridiculous salaries that they pay, the way they treat suppliers by demanding 30 - 90 days credit, and their plans to change the worlds thoughts processes from Green to Blue , one can only discern that they are playing at being a business rather then actually being one. Its not a game.

Burj Dubai Fan 10 years ago

This means that Burj Dubai will remain the tallest tower for at least next 11 years. I love this building and think it deserves to be THE BOSS for years to come!

John Doe 10 years ago

I wish it never gets built!,I wish the greedy investors learn fomr their greed and the govt learns how they swindled millions and why ppl gave into their stories, this just goes to prove how fragile the economy is in Dubai,which has been the worst hit reion in ME! A shame really, the bubble was eventually going to burst but no one had anticipated so soon and to this agree, learn from the mistakes and like other readers have pointed out, the recession had already started, this correction and further corrections in ridiculous house prices are now awaited!!!

Kieran 10 years ago

I know its hard for some to forget but Dubai is not the only place in the world with money and the Burj was neither designed nor lead-built by local contractors. The skills are very portable. 1km+ towers were planned for both Kuwait and Saudi and, as they are countries not as heavily leveraged, financially, as Dubai, they could go ahead with them if they wished. The Burj could be beaten in just a few years if anybody seriously wants to do it. Whether they chose to or not is another question but only people with very restricted vision would go thinking that Nakheel could present the only competition to the Burj in the next 11 years.