Abdullah Al Rafia, Assistant Director General - Engineering and Planning Department, Dubai Municipality, addressing the audience at the inauguration of the 2nd Annual Smart Skyscrapers Summit
The roadmap for skyscraper development in Dubai was charted out successfully at the 2nd Annual Smart Skyscrapers Summit that concluded in Dubai this week. The summit was held under the patronage of the Dubai Municipality and was produced by global conference organizers, Expotrade. The summit was attended by over 350 participants, with an agenda that featured over 20 stimulating keynote speeches, panel discussions and case studies over the course of two exciting days. The scheduled networking sessions gave participants an opportunity to interact with other attendees. The summit took place on 11-12 May at Sofitel Dubai The Palm Resort and Spa.
The summit was inaugurated by Abdullah Al Rafia, Assistant Director General - Engineering and Planning Department, Dubai Municipality in the presence of senior embassy representatives and Wassim Aboushaar, Executive Managing Director, Schindler Middle East, who then welcomed the gathering.
Delivering a special address on behalf of the Dubai Municipality, Abdullah Al Rafia spoke on the Dubai Frame Project that aims to implement one of the highest landmarks in the world which will become an important attraction for tourists and residents alike. Located inside Za’abeel Park, the project will be in the form of a frame with two 150m high towers connected by a bridge at the top of the towers. He explained how the project would provide a great view of ‘Old Dubai’ to the north and ‘New Dubai’ to the south.
The address was followed by a presentation on the challenges of delivering iconic tall and complex buildings globally by Samsung C & T’s Ahmad K. Abdelrazaq. He explained the benefits of Early Contractor Involvement (ECI) and provided case studies on several iconic structures around the world, highlighting the importance of transfer of technology across the boundaries to deliver structures of the highest safety and quality standards, on time and within cost.
Intelligent transit in modern high-rise buildings was the focus of the session conducted by Schindler’s John Mizon, that highlighted how new concepts such as transit management can ensure the quality of space being provided can be increased and improved, thereby creating buildings that are efficient and improve people’s lives.
Other sessions included SULB Company’s Rudi Clayton explaining the advantages of using structural steel in tall buildings. He detailed the advantages of structural steel for owners, designers, fabricators and contractors, including reduced construction times and project costs, aesthetic appeal, design flexibility, high strength, environment friendliness and many more.
KONE’s Johannes de Jong focused on innovative technology to future proof buildings in his session. Emphasizing the importance of optimizing traffic flows within a building, he highlighted how smart, scalable solutions integrating subsystems like access, destination, information and monitoring can enable smoother and smarter people flow.
Sessions on Day 1 featured speakers from AESG and AECOM as well as premium sponsors Emerson Climate Technologies MEA, Guardian, Al-Jazeera Paints, Kansai Paint, Emirates Insolaire, Vision Project Services, speaking on topics ranging from design and construction of sustainable buildings in the Middle East; safety in tall buildings; compressor modulation technology in air conditioning; energy efficiency with glass facades; smart paints; innovative colored solar glass; sustainable paints; use of precision mapping drones. The panel discussion for the day sponsored by Novelis featured an interesting discussion on the current and future trends in architecture, with panelists from Novelis, Perkins+Will, Qatar University and B+H Architects.
Day 2 featured speakers from premium sponsors UTC Building & Industrial Systems and GE Sealants, along with Perkins+Will, Qatar University, Ramboll Middle East, Middle East Centre for Sustainable Development, speaking on vertical transportation and integrated building technologies; silicone structural glazing; smart ideas for future skyscrapers; socio-cultural sustainability and tall buildings; sustainable design and facades for skyscrapers in the Middle East; sustainable development guidelines for skyscrapers. The panel discussion on the second day featured a lively debate on making tall building developments and city infrastructure work.
The Smart Skyscrapers Summit made major strides this year, with greater partnerships with industry giants including Schindler, SULB Company, KONE, Al-Jazeera Paints, Emerson Climate Technologies MEA, Kansai Paint, GE Sealants, Guardian, Emirates Insolaire, UTC Building & Industrial Systems, Vision Project Services, Novelis. The exhibitor lounge was a top draw, with products and solutions displayed by BASF, Reynaers Aluminium, Prysmian Group, Celer Group, Merhis, Liebherr Tower Cranes, Doka, Pentair, Dow, Wild Aquaria, Fujairah Rockwool Factory, Unicoil, Ideal Standard, Guangdong KinLong, VP Groundforce.
The lucky draw at the end of Day 2 proved very popular, with winners receiving an iPad and a complimentary stay at Sofitel The Palm Resort and Spa, Dubai.
The event drew favorable responses from attendees at its close. Matthew Neidlinger, Director - Marketing MEA, Emerson Climate Technologies expressed his gratitude, "We're glad to be part of this event. Previously, we've seen an increase in demand for technologies that have elevated efficiency, comfort, reliability and affordability. Therefore, through our keynote, we've addressed capacity and energy efficiency needs that will make smart buildings and skyscrapers the future of this city."
Antonis Mourikis, Sales Director, Ideal Standard MENA, said, “Smart Skyscrapers has been a good 2-day experience for our company presence in Dubai. The event was very well organized and the speakers were from the most important companies in the field.”
Roger Digby, Commercial Manager – Export, VP Groundforce, mentioned, “The Smart Skyscrapers Summit was a well-organised event and the first attended by VP, as a sponsor, in this region. The conference exposed our products and services to some very good delegates who we hope will become customers.”
Brad Hariharan, Regional Director, Expotrade Middle East, organizers of the conference, said, “We are very happy that the 2nd Annual Smart Skyscrapers Summit was such a success as it fulfilled the important role of showcasing technology that can drive the development of sustainable skyscrapers in the region. We are privileged to hold this event under the patronage of the Dubai Municipality this year. We thank our sponsors, delegates, speakers and partners for being part of this event and look forward to seeing them all again next year.”
For event details, visit www.smartskyscrapers.com
Expotrade Middle East FZ-LLC
1002, Al Thuraya Tower 2, Dubai Media City
PO Box 500686 Dubai, U.A.E.
Tel: +9714-4542135 Fax: +9714-4542136