Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) has commenced work on its new headquarters building, Al-Sheraa (Arabic for sail), in Cultural Village, Al Jadaf, which will be the “tallest, largest, and smartest net zero energy building in the world”, it said in a statement.
The building, with a total built-up area of over 1.5 million square feet, will have over 16,500 square metres of photovoltaic solar panels to produce over 3,500 kilowatt hours and 10,000 square metres of building integrated photovoltaic, generating over 1,100 kWh. The total renewable energy generated will be over 7,000 megawatt hours annually.
The new headquarters, opening in 2019, will accommodate over 5,000 people including employees and visitors. It will also feature a 700-seater auditorium, 1,500 automated car parking facility and nursery to accommodate 80 children.
The design of the building has been inspired by UAE’s traditional houses where enclosed spaces overlook an open courtyard and sail provides shaded areas.
The building will use the latest technologies including Internet of Things, Big Data and Open Data, and Artificial Intelligence. Robots will be used for cleaning and to provide security services. A smart app will alert the employees about the time they should leave their homes based on the traffic.
Al-Sheraa will be a zero energy building, where the total energy used in the building during a year will be equal or less than the energy produced on site during the year, Dewa said, which is expecting a LEED platinum rating.
The building is expected to use 50 percent less water than regular buildings and will have 50 percent more green spaces. It will feature a control centre which will allow essential systems to operate and shut down non-essential systems including air conditioning and lighting.
The new headquarters will be directly linked to Dubai Metro by a 150-metre covered bridge.
“By building Al-Sheraa, we establish a role model in Dubai and the world to achieve a balance between development and the environment to protect the right of future generations to leave a clean, healthy and safe environment. This supports the UAE Vision 2021 to make the UAE one of the best countries in the world, and the Dubai Plan 2021, to make Dubai the preferred place to live, work, and visit,” said DEWA Managing Director and Chief Executive Officer Saeed Mohammad Al Tayer.
“Designing DEWA’s new head office like a sail enhances the UAE National identity. This supports our strategy to promote the National identity, and ensures the protection of the authentic Emirati values. The sail has always been a major element of the UAE’s heritage, and a symbol of sustainability. It refers to the pearl trade and fishing boats.
“The Al-Sheraa building highlights Dubai’s and DEWA’s roles in encouraging a sustainable lifestyle, and using the latest technologies and innovative solutions. We expect the new building to enhance happiness, and improve individual and corporate efficiency,” said Al Tayer.