Foundations for the tallest skyscrapers

Foundations of the World’s Tallest Skyscrapers

How do the foundation configurations compare for six of the world’s tallest skyscrapers? The folks at Groundworks, a residential and commercial foundation repair company, put together this sweet infographic to answer just that! Source: How […]

Aerial view of proposed Kingdom Tower
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Kingdom Tower: World’s Newest Tallest Building for 2016

Aerial view of proposed Kingdom Tower

The newly announced Kingdom Tower is slated to be the World’s tallest when it is completed in 2016 in Jeddah, Saudia Arabia. Part of the $20B Kingdom City development, the tower will stand 3,280 feet tall and cost $1.2B itself. The architect is Adrian Smith who was also the lead architect on the current tallest building in the world, the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, UAE. You can see from the rendering (and others in the article) that the Kingdom Tower structure has a similar triangular footprint compared to the Burj Khalifa.

There is an excellent discussion of the geotechnical challenges, and really a synopsis of the entire foundation design process for the Kingdom Tower in the article from George Leventis, President of Langan International which is providing the geotechnical design… [Editor] Read on for more info on the foundations for the Kingdom Tower [/Editor]


Foundations for the Burj Dubai - The raft slab on top of 192 pile foundations
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Foundations and Geotechnical Engineering for the Burj Dubai – World’s Tallest Building

Foundations for the Burj Dubai - The raft slab on top of 192 pile foundations The Burj Dubai Tower has recently reached it’s final height of 818m (2,684-ft or almost exactly 1/2 a mile!). The foundation system for the Burj Dubai is comprised of 192 bored piles (drilled shafts in my practice) 1.5-m (approximately 5-ft) in diameter and approximately 50-m deep (164-ft). A 3.7-m (12-ft) thick raft foundation sits on top of the piles under the full footprint of the structure. (Image from

The geotechnical investigation for the Burj Dubai (now to be known as Burj Khalifa after the UAE President) is described in detail in a paper by the geotechnical engineer of record, Grahame Bunce of Hyder Consulting (UK) and the independent technical reviewer for the geotechnical design, Harry G. Poulos of Coffey Geotechnics. Click through for the link to the paper and more details. […]