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Type: Commercial offices; Hotel

Location : Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates

Construction: Completed in 2011
Coordinates: 242507N542605E / 24.418637N
Height: 160 mts (520ft )
Floor count: 35
Floor area: 53,100m2(572,000sqft)
Designed by international architectural firm RMJM.

Abu Dhabi
United Arab Emirates

Capital gate has been built to lean 18 degrees

Westwards more than four times that of the
world famous Leaning Tower of Pisa and, earned
the Guinness recognition after rigorous
evaluation by the Awards Committee since
January 2010, when the exterior of the
160metre(524.9 ft) 35-storey tower was completed.
Its the 1st building in the world to use a pre
cambered core with a built in lean of 350 mm
that has been engineered to straighten with the
additional of the upper floor. Its also the first
building in the world to use vertical post
tensioning of the core to
counter movement and
support stresses created by the building over
hang .


The building has an extraordinary

exoskeleton or diagrid to absorb and
channel the forces created by the wind and
seismic pressure as well as the gradient of
Capital gate. Each and every element of the
grid is unique in geometry . Capital gate is
thought to be the middle easts first building
to use a diagrid.
The towers curvaceous shape draws strongly
on the sea and desert the two
elements that have great resonance in Abu
Dhabi. The building form is meant
to represent a swirling spiral of sand , while
the curved canopy , known as the
splash which runs over the awning grand
stand and rises on one side of the
building ,creates wave like effect reflecting
the buildings proximity to the water
and the city's sea faring.

Capital gate under scores the bond between the traditional and modern that
is characteristic of Abu Dhabis development approach.
The capital gate project was able to achieve its record inclination through
an engineering breakout that allows floor plates to be stacked vertically up
to the 12th storey and staggered over each other by between 300mm to
1400mm , which allows for the towers dramatic lean.
The construction also adopted a variety of leaning edge approaches to create
the desired result:
Four hundred and ninety foundation piles were driven 20 to 30
meters under ground to support the structure and counter stresses the
piles , which were initially in compression during construction to
support the lower floors of the building, are now in tension as the stresses
caused by the overlapping have been applied
The vertical and horizontal cross sections of the tower are all unique
There is an asymmetric shape no two rooms are the same . Every one
of the 12500 panes of glass on the faade is different size although each
pane is triangular.

Floor plates change shape and

orientation to create the distinctive over
hang moving from curved triangular to
curved rectangular while increasing in
overall size and migrating from east to
west as they progress up the tower
Features two diagrid systems an
external diagrid defining the towers
shape and an internal diagrid linked to
the center core by eight unique pin
jointed members
All 850 steel diagrid members are
different thickness, length and

The gravitational pressure caused

by the 18 degree incline is
countered by the world's first "precambered core"; a
technique that utilizes 15,000
cubic meters of concrete reinforced
with 10,000 tons of steel with the
core deliberately
built slightly off centre. It has
straightened as the building has
risen, compressing the concrete
and giving it strength,
and moving into (vertical) position
as the weight of the floors has been

Besides Capital Gates gravity-defying lean and its pre-cambered core, the tower has
several other elements that enhance its reputation as one of the worlds most
distinctive projects:
Each room is different as is each pane of faade glass and every interior angle.
Capital Gates shell comprises a super-strong exoskeleton called the diagrid that
carries all the weight of the floors while also providing an unobstructed floor plate
precluding the need for pillars or internal beams. Other high-profile buildings that
use diagrid technology include New Yorks Hearst Tower, the Swiss Re building (The
Gherkin) in London and Beijings CCTV tower.
A cantilevered tea lounge overhangs the towers exterior, 80m above the ground.
Capital Gate also has an internal diagrid that has been used to create a tapered,
60m high atrium.

The distinctive stainless steel splash

that descends from the 19th floor, is a
design element and a shading device that
eliminates over 30 percent of the suns
heat before it reaches the building. The
splash also twists around the building
towards the south to shield the tower as
much as possible from direct sunlight.
Capital Gate's 19th storey outdoor
swimming pool has an unrivalled
panoramic view.

A post tensioned core was designed with vertical cables in one side
tensioned to counteract the lean on the other side . These cables , were
installed in vertical segments that overhang each other every seven
floors , strung together, they span the entire height of the core to maintain it
in a perfectly vertical position. The towers round from and diagrid structure
provide inherent resistance to torsion . At the ground floor , a massive
concrete beam transfers the thrust of the diagrid into the foundations
. It is noteworthy that Abu Dhabi is in a low seismic hazard zone , and the
appropriate factors of safety and stiffness were applied for structural integrity
A free form internal atrium with a dynamic glass roof brings natural light
and space deep into the tower. External lighting is designed to minimize both
light pollution and energy consumption, based on a combination of low-level
landscape lighting with faade lighting comprising a net of compact LED
clusters integrated into the design of the steel glazing system.

Faade design
Capital gates cladding consists of two distinct elements a curtain wall glazing
system an metal mesh sun shading system.
The certain wall consists of diamond shapes panels stacked up floor by floor
each unit is Two floors high and one diagrid wide about 8*8 meters on average .
They follow the geometry of the structural diagrid, which carries their weight
vertically. The panels are braced for wind carries the horizontal load the curtain
wall units are made of two components : steel and glass .
The glass was made in the UAE. It is a low emissitivity glass , very transparent,
yet provides good thermal insulation and glare reduction.
The metal mesh sun shading is made of light weight metal framing with stainless
steel wire mesh , 90% open. The splash is a flexible system design to follow
capital gates curving forms. It is braced to the tower every 5 floors with steel rod
profiles. There are cross bracing rods every floor. The connections for these
elements are located at each diagrid node and extend through the certain
wall joints to reach the steel structure.

While clearly a unique structure was built using some advanced construction
techniques it is believed that the towers appeal goes far beyond an architectural
and engineering marvel. Functionality an purpose have been a prime focus
Capital gate housed Abu Dhabi s first Hyatt hotel , the five star Hyatt capital
gate, as well as approximately 15,000 square meters of office space. The tower is
also strategically important to Abu Dhabi and visually represents the emirate
s progress and evolution . It is the focal point of a world class business district ,
and is inter-connected with the thriving Abu Dhabi national exhibition center ,
which hosted more than 200 events in 2011 , welcoming around one million
visitors . Capital gate visitors or tenants have access to the world class
amenities within the building including facilities such as a fully operated
airport check in facility.
The people of Abu Dhabi feel a sense of honor in capital gate . They are
confident capital gates aesthetic splendor and technical achievement will
generate admiration and discussions around the world for years.