The Edge Competition

The site consists of seven parcels at the bottom of the Business Bay area along the edge of the Al-Khail Road. The Business Bay area is comprised of a complex arrangement of tall office buildings including the Burj Dubai, the tallest building in the world.

The charge is to provide a model for a mixed-use development organized in clusters that would accommodate ten to fifteen thousand people during the day and that would allow many of the businesses to have autonomous presence within this collective and stimulating environment.

The proposed solution extends the length of the site (400 meters) creating an internal street that pulls the different pieces of the program together in a pedestrian urban environment while giving the building a horizontal urban presence and role in the otherwise highly fragmented vertically-bound context. The building’s clusters are organized along the main void in such a way as to allow for each cluster a corresponding opening through the other face of the building. This also allows for the building to be self-shaded all the time. These openings are used as public spaces accessed from the sky-lobbies of the individual clusters.

The main public programs of the project such as meeting rooms, gymnasiums, daycare centers and other services are placed in “keystone” clusters that bridge between the two sides of the building. Commercial spaces are located at the base of the building serving as a link with the rest of Business Bay. Mechanics of mixing and sharing generate an expressive character that departs from the prevalent insular model to take on an urban responsibility.


In Collaboration With Aires Mateus & Associates
Design Team: Hashim Sarkis, Cynthia Gunadi (Project Coordinator), Dima Khairallah, Tomas Janka, Jennifer Harty, Blas Betencourt, Elie Gamburg, Robert Karam, Adam Modesitt, Mete Sonmez, Terah Maher, Lisa Haber-Thomson, Aziza Chaouni, Cheyne Owens
Aires Mateus & Associates: Project Team: Manuel Aires Mateus, Jorge P. Silva (Project Coordinator), Humberto Silva, Andre Pacos, Miguel Valerio, Joao Guimaraes, Diogo Bleck, Paolo Evolvi, Valentino Capelo Souza, Teresa Alves