SRG Tower: The Structural Challenges of One of the World's Slenderest Residential Towers

Farhad Pazoki
Technical Director
WME Consultants, Dubai

Upon completion, the SRG Tower, located on Dubai’s prestigious Sheikh Zayed Road, will be one of the world’s slenderest residential towers ever designed and constructed. The 111-story supertall building will be 468 meters high and will be built on a 30-by-30-meter footprint. This presentation describes some of the challenges faced by the design team and how the solutions implemented respond to these challenges, as well as form part of the unique architecture of this iconic building.

Wind is one of the primary factors that poses a challenge to the project, given its height and slenderness. Collaboration between the architect, structural engineer, and wind engineer was required to develop the building’s shape, while realizing the client’s vision of a supertall iconic residential building. Innovative solutions such as tapering the top third of the building, the introduction of intermediate open garden floors, and the inclusion of a large opening on the roof crown structure are implemented to address and reduce wind response. Advanced nonlinear analysis processes that employ performance based methodology to assess wind effects are also adopted to design structural elements. The building notably includes the unique features of two wind turbines at the roof levels, as well as a viewing platform at the very top of the building.

The site area poses additional challenges to the project, as it demands the application of an innovative lateral load resisting system consisting of an external diagrid and a central concrete core in order to utilize the entire foot print width. A barrette pile foundation is likewise adopted as the most suitable solution to resist exceptionally high loads within the small footprint of the tower. The final solution, addressing these challenges, delivers a sleek yet effective structural form with simple floor plates and core, and an extravagant external diagrid which embraces the architectural intent, yet delivers optimum internal floor spaces.