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The wasl Tower: Touchstone for Adaptability and Sustainability

One of the most ambitious projects of UNStudio is the wasl Tower, which is currently being built in a central Dubai location. The wasl Tower will be a regional touchstone for adaptability and sustainability. It will have one of the world’s tallest ceramic facades and will be able to acclimatise to local temperatures through shading and cooling techniques which is extremely important in the hot desert climate.

The Tower will consist of 64 floors constituting 229 residential units, 258 hotel rooms as part of Dubai’s second Mandarin Oriental Hotel, 185,345 square feet of office space, and 11 parking floors.

The location of the wasl Tower is strategic and excellent: it is framed by Dubai’s famous Burj Khalifa and the new City Walk Development. The Tower is located along Sheikh Zayed Road, which connects the Emirates North to South. People travelling from the International airport can see the wasl Tower mirroring the Burj Khalifa. Two areas are connected by a pedestrian bridge.

The building was planned and designed for mixed-use, with central public areas located high up in the building. One of the many interesting features of the Tower is the so-called “vertical boulevard”, which is the open seam that runs the full height of the tower and is topped by infinity pools on the tower roof. It connects the outdoor with the indoor, which is an unusual feature for this region. All spaces throughout the building have been designed with clean materials, interactive light levels, and deliberated acoustics.

“The main challenge is absolutely the sustainability challenge. We have to stop wasting resources, we have to build constructions that have more longevity, that can last longer and are adaptable and flexible, instead of buildings that have to be put up and taken down again because of any need for change. We have to think about making buildings more accommodating to the future and think of ways that lead to healthier life for people and the environment, a better future”, Caroline Bos, a co-founder of UNStudio, said in one of the interviews for Archi.ru. 

The facade of the wasl Tower will be made using ceramic tiles, manufactured as low-tech glazed ceramic elements. The building will be covered with this thin fine lace of fins like a vail. The parameters, dimensions and direction (12.8 degrees) of the fins were developed using data from the design model. The Tower will get the tallest ceramic façade in the world, with the surface decorated with the autonomously generated light patterns. 

302m tall mixed-use tower will be completed by 02 2024, says the developer, wasl Asset Management Group. The wasl Asset Management Group is one of the largest real estate development and management companies in Dubai.

To learn more about the project, please visit its official web page.

If you’re interested in sustainable architecture, we would recommend you to read our article about Norman Foster and his projects in the UAE.

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