Brief Outline Pentominium Tower, located in Dubai Marina, will potentially be the tallest residential tower in the world. This tower had a unique challenge, in that it had to respond to two different conditions on the site: the density/ proximity of the neighbors and the extreme environment pressures of Dubai. Therefore, the building has two different sides that center around a shared core. One side is a simple extrusion that reaches the full height of the building. This side is primarily southern-oriented and utilizes a system of balconies and a vertical layer of glass to mitigate solar gain. As the building rises this layer of glass becomes wider and functions as a wind break to help protect the balcony from the higher-velocity winds as one gets to the extreme heights of the tower. The other side of the building is a staggered shape, alternating between apartments and voids of sky-gardens. This is achieved through the introduction of six five-storey-high pods that cling structurally to the core. This alternation allows for either communal or semi-private spaces and thus enables the tower to “breathe` within its dense context. The result is a very thin, lightweight 516-meter tower that lightly sits into its setting of extruded neighbors and powerfully maintains its presence in its context and climate. General Information Program: Residential Site Area: 3,500 m2 Floor Area: 115,960 m2 Building Height: 516 m Design Data The unique and elegant architectural design will have a striking visual impact and iconic status on the Dubai skyline. With a slenderness ratio of 1 to 14.3 (width versus height), the building presents an innovative design solution which has never been done before. The result is a very thin, lightweight 516-meter tower that lightly sits into its setting of extruded neighbours and powerfully maintains its presence in its context and climate. This residential proposition was articulated as the fusion of 2 widely known terminologies in the residential sector: the condominium and the penthouse. It is a high-rise skyscraper offering a single unit per floor, loaded with amenities and premium luxury features. Architectural & Structural Design in response to Wind Load The structural design of tall buildings in the Gulf region is normally governed by wind loading. As buildings grow taller and more slender they become more susceptible to cross-wind dynamic response, also known as vortex shedding. This can lead to both large loads and uncomfortable accelerations (swaying) for the building occupants. The irregular vertical profiles of Pentominium, however, work to break up the formation of the regular vortices needed to generate large cross-wind responses. Due to the architectural form, Pentominium experiences unprecedented low loads and accelerations for a building of its height and slenderness. Vertical Lift Shaft As per client’s preference, they would prefer a vertical lift shaft without any lobby transfer in Pentominium. With a straight run of 500m which has not been done in the world currently, it presents many different challenges from design and technical aspect such as: 1. Building movement from wind load 2. Stack effect due to long vertical travel distance 3. The number of stops the elevator serves as each opening creates potential pressure leakage 4. Limited experience of local elevator suppliers which are not trained or have the information/ knowledge to advise on this subject 5. Custom safety system required due to building movement/ stack effect In order to resolve these challenges above, coordination between the design team and engineers from different lift manufactures have allowed us to develop a vertical transport system which will suit perfectly for Pentominium.


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  • Peter Kelly
    Peter Kelly commented
    Wow! that is really,really tall for a residential building.
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