Award of Merit
LEAD DESIGN FIRM: Royal HaskoningDHV
LEAD CONTRACTOR: Al Turki Enterprises
CIVIL AND MEP ENGINEER: SSH
The project—the new hub of Oman Telecommunications Co., or Omantel, the top telecommunications company in Oman—includes as a major feature a stainless-steel woven mesh “shroud” that encircles the building on its exterior and wraps around its six-story atrium. The cladding has “complex contoured and inclined faceted planes,” says the project’s submission for the ENR awards competition. The design of the steel exterior evokes the massar, a type of flowing and overlapping cloth headdress worn in Oman and nearby countries.
The stainless-steel mesh also is one example of the project’s emphasis on sustainability. In addition, the new headquarters includes solar panels on the exterior and has water-saving features. It received a LEED Platinum certification, one of the first projects in Oman to achieve that designation. The project also reported no lost-time injuries in more than 10 million work-hours.
One challenge the team faced was in determining how to connect the project’s two structures with bridges, without distorting the overall form, according to the project’s awards submission. The new headquarters was completed in January 2020 on budget, although it was behind schedule. Its total floor area is 95,000 sq m, including 52,000 sq m of office space and 42,200 sq m of parking.