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Marina Square, “Pearl of the Emirates”

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Moving walks in Zone C of Marina Square

Massive Abu Dhabi project comes together thanks to teamwork.

by Kaija Wilkinson

Toshiba Elevator Middle East (TELME) Managing Director and ELEVATOR WORLD Correspondent Mohamed Iqbal credits teamwork with the successful completion of a 127-unit project for Marina Square, a mixed-use development that is like a city in itself, located on a natural island off the coast of Abu Dhabi. TELME, a subsidiary of Building Systems Corp. of Japan and Toshiba Elevator, was contracted to outfit the various structures in the development, ranging from low rise to 57 stories, with an array of stylish elevators, escalators and moving walks. Completed in phases from 2012 to 2013, the job was delivered on budget and ahead of schedule, Iqbal reports. “The project is definitely a feather in the cap of Toshiba, and its success is due to extensive cooperation between Toshiba Elevator and Building Systems Corp.,” he said.

Marina Square takes up 13.2 million sq. ft. of the 68 million sq. ft. that make up Al Reem Island, which is expected to eventually be home to approximately 280,000 residents. It is anticipated there will be schools, hospitals, shopping malls, restaurants, hotels, spas, gardens, a golf course and beaches. With its residences, malls, offices and stores, Marina Square is a big step in that direction, and Toshiba was a big part of it. Iqbal described it as “a massive, milestone project.”

It consists of 11 high-rise residential towers, a 34-story office tower, three medium-rise buildings and a shopping mall. The residences and office building have:

  • 64 elevators with a maximum speed of 240 mpm and up to 57 stops
  • 23 machine-room-less (MRL) elevators
  • Eight medium-speed elevators
  • Two escalators
  • Two moving walks
  • In the shopping complex, there are:
  • 18 escalators
  • 10 low-rise elevators

Toshiba’s contract was comprehensive. It encompassed design, manufacture, installation and maintenance. At its peak, the project involved a workforce of approximately 8,000-9,000 people, Iqbal said. In order to keep track of the massive task, the team divided the project into five zones: A, B, C, D and E.

In Zone A, there is one high-rise residential building, RAK Tower; the 34-story office building, Infinity Tower; and two low-rise residential buildings, Al Khory Towers 1 and 2. RAK Tower has four passenger elevators with a maximum speed of 240 mpm and one service elevator with a maximum speed of 180 mpm, each making up to 45 stops. Infinity Tower has 10 office elevators with a maximum speed of 240 mpm. It also has one service elevator that serves all floors and has a maximum speed of 180 mpm, and a pair of MRL elevators that serve the office car park. Al Khory Towers has one passenger and one service elevator each, traveling at a maximum speed of 105 mpm. “These buildings overlook the beautiful marina and have an elegant view of Abu Dhabi City from the top floors,” Iqbal notes.

Zone B contains two high-rise residential buildings, One Marina and Durah Tower, and seven townhouses. Each of the high-rise residential buildings is outfitted with four passenger elevators traveling at a maximum speed of 240 mpm. and making 44 stops, and a service elevator that travels at 180 mpm. Each townhouse has an MRL elevator.

Zone C has five, high-rise residential buildings (Marina Blue, Marina Heights 1 and 2, Al Maha, and Burooj View Towers), six independent villas and a podium connecting the shopping center to the residences. Throughout the zone, there are 21 high-speed, 240-mpm passenger elevators, five high-speed service elevators that are either 210 or 180 mpm in speed serving up to 57 stops, 13 MRL elevators, two escalators and two moving walks.

Zone D has a trio of residential buildings, the 51-story high-rise Ocean Terrace and Tala Towers and the 21-story Bay View Tower. Between them, the high rises have 12 passenger elevators traveling at a maximum speed of 240 m per min. and two service elevators traveling at 180 m per min. Bay View Tower has three passenger elevators with a maximum speed of 150 m per min. and one service elevator with the same maximum speed. Zone E is the shopping center, which has several elevators and 18 escalators.

Toshiba reports that careful planning helped minimize installation costs, and that there were no accidents. At the conclusion of the project, TELME received letters of appreciation from both client and contractor, which attested to a job well done, Iqbal said. Client Tamouh, one of three developers building on the island, was so pleased it awarded Toshiba additional work on its 13-building City of Lights project there. Marina Square, said Iqbal, “paved the way for greater Toshiba Elevator presence in the Middle Eastern market.”

Marina Square

  • What it is: the first development on Reem Island by Tamouh, which owns approximately 60% of the island
  • Client: Tamouh Investment
  • Architect: GDP Architects of Kuala Lumpur
  • Vertical-transportation contractor: Toshiba Elevator Middle East LLC, a subsidiary of M/S Toshiba Elevator and Building Systems Corporation of Japan
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