Bahrain World Trade Center moves towards launch of kingdom’s first world-class office and commercial complex
The Bahrain World Trade Center (BWTC), which is set to launch as the Kingdom’s leading mixed-use commercial development, announced further progress on the landmark project at Cityscape Dubai 2006, the international property exhibition, as it moves toward completion of the project expected in the first quarter of 2007.
Situated on the Manama waterfront and in the heart of the region’s leading financial and business hub, key aspects of work have now been concluded on the complex’s various and unique components. Designed to create an unmatched urban centre in Manama, the BWTC is comprised of the two 50-storey twin office towers in addition to MODA Mall, Bahrain’s only ultra high-end shopping mall as well as the five-star Sheraton Hotel.
The towers have already reached their full height of 240 metres, making them key icons of the Manama skyline and among Bahrain’s tallest buildings. Furthermore, finishing and cladding works as well as the exterior glazing of the building are now in an advanced stage.
Internally, the foundations have been set with approximately 25% of the office floors now ready for handover to tenants. Fit-out work has also begun on common areas on all office floors with many already having complete lift lobbies, pantries and male and female washrooms. 50% of the office lifts in both towers have been commissioned and all mechanical and electrical functions including fire systems are in place, setting the stage for the next phase of development on the buildings’ interiors.
“There has been significant headway on the project in recent months as the BWTC moves steadily closer to launch and to the introduction of a truly world-class concept in design and functionality. The BWTC will not only provide a premier business address, the complex, which has been designed as the Kingdom’s first fully mixed-use commercial development, also offers the broadest range of unique value added features,” said Ms. Claire Hughes, Associate Director, in charge of BWTC office leasing at DTZ Bahrain, the project’s managing and leasing agents.
Advancements have also been made on the unique technologies that will make the BWTC the world’s first buildings to utilise wind energy not only to supply a portion of the development’s power needs, but also position the BWTC among the region’s most intelligent office spaces.
The implementation of the buildings’ SMART systems are currently in progress with specialist IT teams working in close conjunction with the towers’ engineers and lead contractors. Works on the physical network and IT infrastructure is in motion. Once complete, it is expected that the BWTC’s IT systems provide tenants with access to unmatched levels of connectively, security, convenience and time and costs savings.
Significant work is also underway on the installation of the BWTC’s one-of-a kind turbines, which will provide for approximately 11 – 15% of the electricity needs of the BWTC. Wind power will be harnessed by three massive turbines, supported by bridges spanning between the two towers.
The installation of all three bridges has already been completed in addition to the placement of two of three nacelles, the mechanisms which will hold in place the turbines’ propellers. The third nacelle will be placed in January of 2007 with the turbines affixed and made ready for use just prior to the development’s completion. The turbine propellers will only be put in place once all on-site work is completed. Following a period of testing, the turbines will become operational with the opening of the complex.
Mr. Duaij Al Rumaihi, Associate Director, DTZ Bahrain and Center Manager of MODA Mall added, “We are also delighted with the progress made on MODA Mall, the retail heart of the complex, which is also in its final stages of work and is expected to open to shoppers in March 2007. It is set to offer shoppers as well as visitors and tenants of the office towers with an unsurpassed shopping experience and dining options, making the development both a work and lifestyle destination of the highest standards.”
Construction work is nearly complete on the 16,500 square metre mall, which is comprised of the current 6,900 square metre Bahrain Commercial Complex – currently under refurbishment – in addition to a new 9,600 square metre extension. With the exception of minor construction works, only interior fit out works remain.
As the project nears completion, there is strong demand among local, regional and international companies across multiple industry sectors to locate within the buildings as well as MODA Mall. The office towers are more than 40% let with a significantly higher percentage currently under offer with more bluechip companies soon expected to join the ranks of recently announced agreements with leading regional financial institutions including Kuwait Finance House (Bahrain), Bank Muscat International and National Commercial Bank of Saudi Arabia.
MODA Mall anchor tenant, Villa Moda, the Kuwait-based top luxury fashion retailer, was also recently announced. MODA Mall will consist of some 160 luxury retail shops and top fashion brands and is already 95% let.
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