- Architects: HOK
- Location: Abu Dhabi – United Arab Emirates
- Architect Of Record: CH2M
- Area: 175300.0 m2
- Project Year: 2016
- Photographs: Tim Griffith
- Civil/Structural Engineering: CH2M (was Halcrow Yolles)
- Mep, Fire Protection, Electronic Security: WSP
- Life Safety, Telecom, Fire & Ls: ARUP
- Audio Visual/Acoustics: Shen Milsom Wilke
- Façades / Building Maintenance: Werner Sobek
- Wind Engineering: BMT Fluid Mechanics
- Quantity Surveying: Cyril Sweett
- Specialty Lighting: PHA Lighting Design
Text description provided by the architects. The new headquarters of the Abu Dhabi National Oil Company (ADNOC) represents this state-owned institution as a pillar of the economy in the United Arab Emirates. Contrasting with the many twisting, turning “shape” buildings in Abu Dhabi, HOK’s elegant, minimalist design stands out and expresses stability, strength and seriousness of purpose. Its elegantly simple silhouette embodies a “less is more” modernist philosophy while introducing a bold landmark to the city skyline.
The exterior frame of the 75-story tower is clad in granite to convey a sense of permanence. The sides rise to an architrave free of the building mass, creating the image of a monumental arch rising next to the Arabian Gulf. The tower’s simple, classic form serves as a recognizable focal point for people traveling to and from the city.
ADNOC’s headquarters occupies a prominent urban site overlooking the Arabian Gulf. The tower is located on the Corniche, a seaside boardwalk with park areas and beaches that stretches along the city’s west side. The landscape around the building offers public amenities and ties into a planted area to the east, where there is an underground parking garage.
Adjacent to the new building are ADNOC’s 1970s headquarters and support buildings, which remained operational through the construction of the new structure. Nearby is the prestigious Emirates Palace Hotel, where guests can enjoy views of the new tower.
The parallelogram shape of the building footprint responds to the path of the sun. The side nearest the Arabian Gulf faces true north, providing for minimal heat gain and unobstructed views of the water through clear glass panels. Columns are located 20 feet from the northern perimeter, allowing the structure to be cantilevered from this side and creating unencumbered interior space.
The south side is sheathed in a double wall of insulated, fritted glass and horizontal sun shades that mitigate direct sunlight. A LED lighting system on this facade enhances the tower’s presence at night, when temperatures in this desert climate are cooler and the city comes to life. The lighting display can be programmed to change color, patterns and intensity to mark holidays and special events.
The sides of the building facing east and west are sheathed in Bethel White granite, which was selected for its durability and consistent color. These piers house service elevators, fire stairs and mechanical rooms. To preserve the architecture’s simple form and clean lines, they are carefully detailed so that access hatches, ventilation louvers and maintenance equipment are hidden from view.
The north-side building entrance features a large, stainless-steel canopy supported by a single column. The canopy repeats the triangular and parallelogram shapes of the building in its pattern of aluminum louvers. Complementing the design of this shading device is an angular reflecting pool in front of the entry. The building is LEED New Construction Gold certified, and has recently received LEED O+M Platinum certification.