BINGHATTI STARS, DUBAI

Bing hatti De­vel­op­ers has avoided dis­putes and de­lay son Bing hatti Stars by fol­low­ing a ver­ti­cal in­te­gra­tion model that helps keep the pro­ject on track

Construction Week - - CONTENTS -

Ex­plore the con­struc­tion pro­gramme of Binghatti Stars, a $68m de­vel­op­ment in Sil­i­con Oa­sis that is us­ing a ver­ti­cally in­te­grated model to pre­vent dis­putes and de­lays

Set against the back­drop of Dubai Sil­i­con Oa­sis is a 16-storey res­i­den­tial build­ing worth $68m (AED250m) called Binghatti Stars. The un­der-con­struc­tion prop­erty is lo­cated in the first master-planned smart city in the UAE. It is one of 20 tow­ers Binghatti De­vel­op­ers has ei­ther com­pleted or is build­ing in the gov­ern­ment free zone. No de­vel­oper owns more real es­tate in Sil­i­con Oa­sis than Binghatti.

It is the ver­ti­cal in­te­gra­tion model that Binghatti fol­lows that makes the pro­ject stand out. Osama Hel­lis, pro­ject man­ager of Granada Euro­pean Con­struc­tion (GEC), the main con­trac­tor on site, tells Con­struc­tion Week that the ar­range­ment helps mit­i­gate de­lays and dis­putes and makes it eas­ier to de­liver projects and pay sub-con­trac­tors promptly.

“The main con­trac­tors and sub­con­trac­tors are all in-house, which makes it eas­ier for us to com­plete projects on time, be­cause we are work­ing as one team,” he says. “We do not need to wait for pay­ments for sub-con­trac­tors. I just speak to the peo­ple up­stairs and we can quickly pro­vide pay­ment for our sub-con­trac­tors, and this makes us a bit [dif­fer­ent].”

It also helps with the on-time de­liv­ery of projects – Hel­lis says the abil­ity to quickly pump money down the sup­ply chain has pre­vented de­lays. “We are do­ing ev­ery­thing in-house and this is what en­ables us to build in a much more ef­fi­cient way. Pay­ments do not take much time to re­lease. In fact, we are re­leas­ing pay­ments weekly, which does not hap­pen very of­ten in con­struc­tion,” he adds.

While the ma­jor­ity of the firms in­volved in the Binghatti Stars pro­ject are in-house, sub­sidiaries of the de­vel­oper still have to sub­mit ten­ders for the pro­ject and fol­low nor­mal pro­ce­dures to en­sure the busi­ness gets value for money. “GEC had to sub­mit a ten­der for this pro­ject ac­cord­ing to the nor­mal pro­ce­dures, and we do not com­pro­mise on the qual­ity just be­cause we are our own or­gan­i­sa­tion,” Hel­lis em­pha­sises.

Af­ford­able, qual­ity hous­ing is what Binghatti wants to build for its Dubai Sil­i­con Oa­sis real es­tate portfolio. Binghatti Stars is de­signed to cap­ture what Hel­lis calls the “af­ford­able lux­ury” seg­ment of the mar­ket – end-users earn­ing be­tween ap­prox­i­mately $4,000 (AED15,000) and $8,000 (AED30,000) per month. The de­vel­oper even agreed to dou­ble the bud­get for the pro­cure­ment of fin­ish­ing ma­te­ri­als to en­sure the build­ing has a high-end aes­thetic that can at­tract this tar­get de­mo­graphic.

Binghatti Stars also ad­heres to Dubai’s green build­ing reg­u­la­tions. “This is a green build­ing and we are com­pletely com­pli­ant with the green build­ing code, even for power sav­ing and waste man­age­ment. We only use power-sav­ing LED light­ing to in­crease the en­ergy ef­fi­ciency of the build­ing, and more than 50% of the ma­te­ri­als, such as steel and wood, come from re­cy­cled ma­te­ri­als,” he says.

Ma­te­ri­als re­use is part of Binghatti’s green build­ing strat­egy, which it em­ploys across its portfolio of projects. A mod­u­lar con­struc­tion sys­tem to build the geo­met­ric pat­terns of Binghatti Stars al­lowed all of the alu­minium and ply­wood shut­ter­ing to be reused, not just for dif­fer­ent floors of the build­ing, but across

“WE DO NOT NEED TO WAIT FOR PAY­MENTS FOR SUB-CON­TRAC­TORS. I JUST SPEAK TO THE PEO­PLE UP­STAIRS AND WE CAN QUICKLY PRO­VIDE PAY­MENT FOR OUR SUB-CON­TRAC­TORS.”

Binghatti’s other projects lo­cated nearby. More­over, the tiles on the ter­raced roof and the white paint for the façade have both been de­signed to re­flect sun­light and min­imise strain on cool­ing sys­tems. The façade has also been de­signed so that it pro­vides shad­ing.

“We have in­creased the qual­ity stan­dards of our build­ings sig­nif­i­cantly from the first build­ings to the ones we build to­day,” says Hel­lis. “We are fo­cused on de­vel­op­ing af­ford­able and lux­u­ri­ous projects.”

In terms of lay­out, Binghatti Stars boasts 274 stu­dio apart­ments, 44 onebed­room flats, 55 two-bed units, and six re­tail out­lets lo­cated on the ground floor. It will also have a tem­per­a­ture-con­trolled swim­ming pool and hot tub, a rooftop gar­den, a gym, and a chil­dren’s play area. Con­struc­tion be­gan in Au­gust 2017 and the prop­erty is sched­uled for com­ple­tion be­fore the end of 2018.

“We are now fo­cused on the struc­tural el­e­ments of the build­ing and hope to have it com­pleted [this year],” says Hel­lis. “We are en­gaged in lots of dif­fer­ent works at the mo­ment, in­clud­ing con­crete work, block work, plas­ter­ing, and paint­ing. We are also pre­par­ing for the fin­ishes of gyp­sum, wood, and ce­ramic, and we are on track for all of that.”

While work re­mains on track, the pro­ject has en­coun­tered is­sues that gave Hel­lis a headache. “We have a chal­lenge here be­cause we are sur­rounded by build­ings and we do not have suf­fi­cient space to store all of the ma­te­ri­als we need for the con­struc­tion,” he says.

“But we found a way around this – we have hired a tem­po­rary stor­age area for ma­te­ri­als and we have trips for ma­te­ri­als de­liv­er­ies done in such a way as to min­imise traf­fic dis­rup­tion be­cause we are lo­cated on the main street. When it comes to noise, we [obey] the re­quire­ments set by the Dubai Sil­i­con Oa­sis Au­thor­ity – we work from 7am to 7pm to not dis­turb the neigh­bour­hood. We also do not work at the week­end. And this is a chal­lenge, be­cause we are de­liv­er­ing the pro­ject on time.”

Binghatti Stars is sur­rounded on three sides by real es­tate, which cre­ates a lo­gis­ti­cal is­sue for con­crete pour­ing as there is no space for the ma­chine ad­ja­cent to the prop­erty. To tackle this, Binghatti placed two con­crete pumps in­side the prop­erty and built around them. Af­ter each 2,300m² con­crete slab is cast, the tower boom pumps are ex­tended higher. When all 16 floors are fin­ished, a 400-tonne mo­bile crane will lift the two con­crete pumps out of the build­ing.

Such a lo­gis­ti­cally chal­leng­ing un­der­tak­ing has not fazed Hel­lis, how­ever. In fact, the num­ber of floors has even been in­creased from the orig­i­nal 10 due to cus­tomer de­mand. While the work is tricky, Hel­lis says GEC con­tin­ues to com­plete one floor per week, av­er­ag­ing four floors a month.

The fi­nal ques­tion for Hel­lis is a sim­ple one: where does the name Binghatti Stars come from? The prop­erty gets its name, he ex­plains, from the an­gu­lar con­crete star­burst pat­terns that are clearly vis­i­ble when look­ing up at the build­ing’s façade from the ground. Like all of Binghatti’s build­ings, the façade is white and or­ange to rep­re­sent sun­rise and sun­set. By the end of the year, Binghatti De­vel­op­ers hopes a new star will be born in Dubai’s Sil­i­con Oa­sis.

WORDS BY OS­CAR ROUSSEAU PHO­TOG­RA­PHY BY AJITH NAREN­DRA

Osama Hel­lis, GEC.

GEC is the pro­ject’s main con­trac­tor.

Binghatti Stars is lo­cated in Dubai Sil­i­con Oa­sis.

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