November 27, 2023 | Articles
Hill International is shaping the skyline at El Alamein, a new hub for tourism that the Egyptian government has planned on its Mediterranean Coast in the north, with its contract to provide project management services for five planned towers.
The client is the Ministry of Housing, Utilities and Urban Communities – New Urban Communities Authority (NUCA) – City Edge Development and the Marina Alamein Towers (also called Marina Towers) consists of residential and a hotel development with the five towers of heights ranging from 36 to 42 stories (150 meters to 170 meters). Towers 1, 2 and 3 will have a built-up area of about 300,000 SQM and Towers 4 and 5 with total built up area of 220,000 SQM.
At present, construction is ongoing simultaneously for the skeleton package of all towers, says Perihan Elwy, Vice President for Egypt Projects, noting the development has been divided into two main construction packages.
CP01 (construction package 1) covers Towers 1,2 and 3 with a shared podium which now has made an overall progress 36.5%, while 33.5% of the work has been completed for CP02 (Towers 4 and 5) also with a shared podium.
The raft foundation for Tower 3 is 100% complete, while work is progressing for the first-floor slab of that tower. For Tower 2, raft foundation work is almost complete, while 25% of the raft foundation is complete for Tower 1, Elwy says.
For Towers 4 and 5, raft foundation is complete 100% with work now underway for the first-floor slabs for both towers, she said, adding work has also started for the podium foundation.
The targeted completion for the current awarded packages (concrete skeleton and block work) is January 2024 for CP01 (Towers 1, 2 and 3) and February 2024 for CP02 (Towers 4 and 5).
“We are working full steam on completing the towers on time, which will be followed by the finishing and MEP packages by a targeted March 2026,” she says.
A main challenge that Hill International had to deal with is the project’s design was under development while work started with the enabling package.
“The solution was to coordinate with the project design consultant [EHAF] , developer [City Edge] and the client to secure the essential approvals on required design packages. Accordingly, our focus was to ensure work on site progressed without any impact on the project’s approved program,” Elwy says.
Managing all project stakeholders (client – NUCA , design consultant – EHAF , Developer City Edge, hotel operator – IHG for the Tower 5 – hotel) and the main contractor for each package was another task that had to be carried out in unison and the solution was to establish proper communication channels, a stringent project reporting system and to remaining laser focused on coordinating all elements, she said.
Hill also maintained close coordination with the client to ensure a seamless project cash flow and eliminating potential risks of cost over runs or delays in implementation schedule, she said.
Big picture view
The Marina Towers project is located in a prime water-front location at the New Alamein city on the Mediterranean Coast and is in line with Egypt’s plan to develop multiple boutique tourism and mixed-use facilities.
The site of the towers is much like Dubai when a series of new high rises were being built on the Shaikh Zayed Road or the adjoining Dubai Marina defining the skyline of the emirate.
Hill is not only providing project and construction management services for metro, museums and several iconic hotels along the Nile in Egypt, but also bringing its knowledge and expertise from across the globe to give a new dimension to the construction of high rises to the North African nation, says Waleed Abdel Fattah, President of the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region.
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