Sunday June 16th, 2024
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Riyadh Eyes World’s Tallest Skyscraper by Foster + Partners

At two kilometres, this skyscraper would supersede Burj Khalifa & Mecca Clock Tower, becoming the tallest in the world.

Hassan Tarek

The race for the world's tallest building may have a new contender. Foster + Partners, a renowned British architectural firm, is reportedly designing a two-kilometre-high skyscraper in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia. This ambitious project, if completed, would dwarf the current titleholder, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, and surpass the Abraj Al Bait Clock Tower in Mecca, solidifying its position as the tallest structure in Saudi Arabia.

This wouldn't be Saudi Arabia's first foray into architectural superlatives. The Kingdom is currently developing Jeddah Tower, designed by Adrian Smith + Gill Gordon Architecture, which also aspires to claim the title of the world's tallest building upon completion. This ongoing project in Jeddah highlights a trend of "giga-projects'' undertaken by Saudi Arabia, pushing the boundaries of architectural ambition. Another example is The Line, a 170-kilometre-long city planned for the Neom development zone, with structures reaching 500 metres in height.

Foster + Partners is no stranger to these ambitious Saudi projects. The firm boasts a history in the country, having designed the iconic Al Faisaliah Tower in Riyadh and contributing to the high-speed rail network.

Their projects in Saudi Arabia extend beyond the proposed skyscraper, with involvement in the redevelopment of Riyadh's King Khalid International Airport, the design of the Red Sea International Airport, a private airport terminal, and a luxury resort on the Red Sea coast. For this resort, Foster + Partners is also designing a hotel and a unique attraction – "the world's first fully immersive experiential marine life center."

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