NEW YORK — Langan International announced its role as a key consultant on Kingdom Tower, in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia. As part of an elite design team, Langan is providing multiple engineering services — geotechnical, site/civil, traffic, and parking planning — to support what will be the tallest tower in the world.
Kingdom Tower, located near the Red Sea, will rise more than 1,000 meters (about 3,300 feet) into the Arabian sky. When completed, it will eclipse the reigning tallest building, Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, by more than 173 meters (568 feet). The first phase of the overall Kingdom City development comprises the tower, a 97,000-square-meter retail mall, and underground garages for more than 4,700 cars.
“We are honored to be working alongside Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture and Thornton Tomasetti, as well as other design team members, on this world-record-shattering project,” said George E. Leventis, president, Langan International. “When Langan expanded into the Middle East, our goal was to become the consultant of choice for major challenging projects in the region, and no project will be more prominent than Kingdom Tower.”
Langan International’s Khaldoun Fahoum, vice president, Middle East regional manager; and Alan Poeppel, vice president based in New York City, have been working with the Kingdom Tower design team from the very beginning. They have provided their technical expertise, and managed the internal coordination of Langan engineers from multiple disciplines located in firm offices from Abu Dhabi and Dubai to New York and San Francisco.
Langan designed the Kingdom Tower foundation to overcome challenging subsurface conditions consisting of very weak rock and highly permeable coral rock, which impacted pile capacities and settlement, among other critical design issues. Important geotechnical aspects of the project included a sophisticated subsurface investigation using specialized field and laboratory testing, an advanced pile and barrette testing program, and a site-specific seismic hazard analysis.
With respect to site/civil engineering, Langan is managing multiple challenges ranging from locating and orienting a tower in the center of a planned city to stormwater designs that will mitigate flooding in a region recently stricken with severe flooding disasters. Part of the overall stormwater management system designed by Langan will eventually collect, detain, and discharge rainwater into a massive reflection pond at the base of Kingdom Tower. Also, Langan will support the transformation of the conceptual master plan into construction level documents complete with roadway elevations, defined property boundaries, subsurface utility layouts, and stormwater detention requirements.
For nearly a year, Langan traffic engineers and parking design consultants have been examining onsite circulation patterns and reviewing the traffic master plan for Jeddah’s Kingdom City, designed by HOK Architects, to design the site access points, which includes provisioning for sophisticated security screening to be installed at entry plazas. Langan also provided innovative recommendations on the internal circulation patterns to the Kingdom Tower garages, the layout of spaces inside the garage, and the design and orientation of helixes.
“In a very brief time period, George Leventis and his team have established Langan International as the leading geotechnical engineering firm in the Middle East region,” said David T. Gockel, president/CEO, Langan Engineering & Environmental Services. “They have also done an outstanding job proving that our one-stop-shop model works anywhere in the world. By integrating other Langan services on Kingdom Tower, George, Khaldoun, and Alan have streamlined what would otherwise be a complex coordination process among various consultants, which ultimately brings measurable value to our international clients.”
In addition to Kingdom Tower, Langan has designed the foundations for numerous high-rise projects around the globe, including the 450M WorldOne Tower in Mumbai (the tallest residential-only tower in the world); the Four Seasons in Miami (the tallest building in South Florida); the Fontainebleau Hotel Resort and Casino in Las Vegas (slated to be the tallest building on the Las Vegas strip); One Rincon in San Francisco, (the tallest residential building in the Bay Area); Turnberry Tower in Virginia (the tallest residential tower in the Washington, D.C. area); and The Brooklyner (the tallest structure in Brooklyn).