Bin Laden Group to build world's tallest tower
Saudi Arabia's Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud shows a model of the Jeddah Tower on Tuesday.
August 2nd, 2011
10:46 AM ET

Bin Laden Group to build world's tallest tower

Saudi Arabia's Kingdom Holding has hired Saudi Bin Laden Group to build the world's tallest skyscraper in Jeddah, reports.

Jeddah Tower will be 1,000 meters (3,281 feet) tall and will contain a Four Seasons luxury hotel, apartments, condominiums and offices that overlook the Red Sea, Financial Times reported.

Kingdom Holding is paying Bin Laden Group, one of the world's largest construction companies, about $1.2 billion to take on the five-year project, according to Financial Times.

Saudi Bin Laden Group was founded in 1931 by Muhammad Awad bin Laden, the billionaire father of terrorist Osama bin Laden. It built much of Saudi Arabia's highways and infrastructure, as well as entire districts and cities.

The company constructed additions to the Muslim nation's two holiest mosques in Mecca and Medina. It operates throughout the Middle East and was chosen in 1964 to reclad the golden Dome of the Rock mosque in Jerusalem.

Over the years, Saudi Bin Laden Group has expanded into a conglomerate that includes engineering, manufacturing and telecommunications, according to business analysis site

Osama bin Laden, the 17th of 52 children, inherited part of his father's fortune, but his radical activities led the family to disown him in 1994.

Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, a nephew of Saudi Arabia's King Abdullah, announced the tower building contract Tuesday. He owns 95% of Kingdom Holding, according to Financial Times.

When completed, Jeddah Tower will easily surpass Dubai's 828-meter (2,717-foot) Burj Khalifa as the world's tallest building.

The Chicago firm Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture designed the project and will oversee its development, reported. Adrian Smith was one of Burj Khalifa's designers when he was with Skidmore Owings and Merrill.

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Filed under: Architecture • Saudi Arabia
soundoff (528 Responses)
  1. michaelfury

    August 2, 2011 at 10:56 am | Report abuse |
    • gfg

      must be nice to have a gov that takes care of its society

      August 2, 2011 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
  2. Osama Towers

    Rub that in your face why don't you.

    August 2, 2011 at 10:57 am | Report abuse |
  3. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    The timing is perfect.
    That's the world's new Empire State Building.

    August 2, 2011 at 10:58 am | Report abuse |
    • Carol

      Some religious nuts are allready calling it the second Tower of Babel.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  4. Jack Ass

    now we can knock this one down. an eye for an eye

    August 2, 2011 at 11:00 am | Report abuse |
    • Chicago Mammy

      That's a great idea. Why not create more people who hate America. Oh – if only you could think

      August 2, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  5. EricLr

    I await the irony of Al Quaida flying a jet into it.

    Oh, but I guess that won't happen, what with the Saudis paying them off and all.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:01 am | Report abuse |
    • DeejCNN

      Or members of the Tea Party!

      August 2, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  6. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    @ Jack Ass:
    Yes, that was my first thought, too.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:02 am | Report abuse |
  7. Erik


    August 2, 2011 at 11:03 am | Report abuse |
  8. jimzcarz

    Tallest Pyramid yet...

    August 2, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  9. Anthony

    The Saudi approach to space travel is spot on. Just build a skyscrapper tall enough that it is just a stones throw from LEO.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
    • TheThinker

      Just because the object is high doesn't mean it's in orbit. Drop it out the window at 100 miles high and it will fall. It needs to be thrown horizontally out the window at 17000 mph in order to orbit.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Osama's Ghost

    I can't wait for a plane to crash into it.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:04 am | Report abuse |
  11. Ted

    Just perfect. We people in the US (other western countries, too ?) spend 2 months arguing about cutting programs and spending. Meanwhile, the Saudis are using our gas money to build monuments to their wealth.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
  12. Coach Lew

    This is a direct SLAM IN OUR FACE by the Saudi's. It might not bother a lot of Americans but it is bothering the crap out of me. Why don't we keep training Saudi Pilots and continue selling our weapon systems to them. Then throw in some high tech top secret stuff and that should lead to a lot of American heads being lopped off. I say pull the heck out of the entire Mid-East, close our doors to them and let them fend for themselves without any assistance from the U.S. What is so hard about that?

    August 2, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Doctor K

      So are you proposing we all walk to work, because that's what you'll be doing without Saudi oil.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:14 am | Report abuse |
    • yuh

      People get over tragedies..something that happened 10 years ago isnt going to stop a country from building and prospering. Stop the hate and racism.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:26 am | Report abuse |
    • NKPS

      But all the same, nice building, from an engineering point of view. And in a global economy with these levels of populations, don't see things changing around to suit what America wants. Let us be happy that we were able to take their oil cheaply for a long time. We can work towards cutting that dependency down, but no one, or no single personality seems to have the wherewithal to do that.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:56 pm | Report abuse |
    • jaquinn oiff

      Yeah, actually, I heard this tower is going to be twin towers the same height, both 2.5 times bigger than the wtc, and at 85% of the way up towards the top, they will build a hand of Allah on one tower, slapping the other hand of Allah on the other tower as if to say. Islam is the greatest! Allah is the greatest! I think Daniel Libeskind got the contract to do the design right after he is finished with the small little freedom tower replacement that will make us feel better about the 911 domestic terror attack by our own government.

      August 2, 2011 at 7:33 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Madame Royale

    ...and we know what happened to the Tower of Babel....

    August 2, 2011 at 11:06 am | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      yeah, scattered the people, made them speak different languages, been there, done that, back for round 2.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:46 am | Report abuse |
  14. ELH

    "American company Adrian Smith and Gordon Gill Architecture has been employed to design and oversee development of the project."

    August 2, 2011 at 11:07 am | Report abuse |
  15. Osama Towers

    The taller it is the easier it falls. So it should only take one patially-fueled 737 to take it down if current belief's concerning what it takes to bring towers down continue to hold sway.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
    • YeomanDroid

      will probably collapse under its own weight if god wills it.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:42 am | Report abuse |
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