Jeddah Tower Progress: What Happened to the World’s Tallest Tower?


Construction on the world’s tallest tower was scheduled to finish this year but there is no end in sight for the ambitious project.

Work on the Jeddah Tower stalled in 2018, less than one quarter of the way through the 1,000 metre high Saudi Arabian project.

First started in 2013 the skyscraper would have been taller than Dubai’s Burj Khalifa at 830 metres and would have been the heart of Jeddah Economic City.

Thornton Tomasetti principal Robert Sinn said he is part of the engineering company that provided structural design services for building formerly known as Kingdom Tower.

“The project halted construction on the tower about two years ago,” Sinn said.

“We are hopeful that construction will recommence this year.

“There is no revised completion date, construction on the surrounding masterplan is ongoing.”

Related: Saudi Arabia Launches ‘Giga Projects’ for G20

▲ The abandoned Jeddah Tower and Jeddah Economic City site.

In February, building developer Jeddah Economic Company posted a video to their Twitter page promoting the tower.

The footage included parent company Kingdom Holding’s chief executive officer Talal Almaiman visiting the site and an image of the elongated building featuring the words: “Vision 2030 Kingdom of Saudi Arabia”.

Almaiman has been part of the project since it was initiated by Kingdom Holding Co owner Prince Alwaleed bin Talal.

The building was originally going to be a mile-high tower but was downgraded to one kilometre.

As of 22 October, 2017 the central core of the tower was officially at level 60 and the walls were 248m high.

In March 2018 after lengthy delays construction recommenced however little progress was made.

The mega-tall skyscraper is expected to be the heart of Kingdom City, a 23-million square metre mixed-use development site which currently looks like a construction zone.

▲ The world's tallest tower is the centrepiece of the yet to be built Jeddah Economic City.

A Four Seasons hotel and serviced apartment was planned to anchor the building along with office space, luxury condominiums and an observatory overlooking the Red Sea and Obhur Creek.

Kingdom Holding and Bill Gate’s Cascade Investment Management each hold a 47.5 per cent interest in Four Seasons.

The 1,000 metre skyscraper was designed by Adrian Smith+Gordon Gill Architecture; Adrian Smith was also the architect behind the Burj Khalifa when he was part of Skidmore, Owings and Merrill.

Kingdom Holding Co, the Jeddah Economic Company and Adrian Smith+Gordon Gill Architecture did not respond to The Urban Developer's requests for comment at the time of publishing.


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