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, Gulfnews.com 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 Hoovers.com.

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, Gulfnews.com 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. Joey Isotta-Fraschini

    That government can take care of its society with the value of its natural resources.
    Our government could only take care of our society with our society's production of something–anything–of real value.
    They have enough stuff to go around.
    We don't.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:08 am | Report abuse |
  2. Sandy

    Let's fly a couple of our drones into it. Great minds think alike!

    Oh . . . and let's make sure they are loaded with fuel!

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

      Why waste so much valuables, our main RAT HUNTERS?

      Rather just ONE cruise missile would do the job in one stroke !!!

      August 2, 2011 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
    • reality

      Its time that Muslim start sending drones to hunt down western terrorists.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  3. kelly

    Those ppl have so much money they do stupid things like that with it. They should be thanking the Americans b/c as much as they jack up the oil prices we are paying for it. I hope they get bomb threats once a week.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
  4. Badger

    Terrorists won't fly an airliner into it. It's in the Kingdom.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:09 am | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      right!! Saudis don't have Dick Cheney

      August 2, 2011 at 8:30 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Chris

    Anyone thinking what im thinking? Not that we haven't done enough, but it would be funny if they finished it and on its opening day something happened.

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

    Maybe a huge earth tremor will take that monstrosity down or maybe a small asteroid will strike it. Kind of like the terrorists flying the jets into the trad centers. Who would be stupid enough to live in a place like that?

    August 2, 2011 at 11:11 am | Report abuse |
  7. Roger B

    Wait until its finished and full of happy Arabs,... Then We know what should come next.... PAYBACK!!!

    August 2, 2011 at 11:13 am | Report abuse |
  8. Jonathan

    Way to go CNN. "Let's make sure to highlight the name Bin Laden, as if it's somehow related to the terrorist."

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

      its owned by the same family, genius.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Cedar Rapids

      And that is it, thats the only connection. All these people wanting it to be hit by jets or calling it payback, thats stupid.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:47 am | Report abuse |
    • collins61

      Its as good as the reasons 9/11 happened, sprinkled lovingly with revenge.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:08 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      Osama was exiled from the family. Quite a few of us have a nutty relative, uncle who is in prison, etc, that doesn't mean the whole family is screwed up.

      August 2, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Huh?

    So, will they have a separate elevator for ladies?

    This society is so backward, why do we care about them building the largest building in the world?

    Saudi Arabian society is "allowed" because they have oil and (our) money....

    ...sigh...

    August 2, 2011 at 11:16 am | Report abuse |
    • Gjorgen

      Why do you assume the women will get an elevator? Try the stairs!

      August 2, 2011 at 12:45 pm | Report abuse |
    • reality

      They are not much different than any right wingers in USA.

      August 2, 2011 at 4:20 pm | Report abuse |
    • Sam

      YOUR MONEY??????? What money???????? you don't have money nor oil as much as they do. Saudis are major holder of the treasury bills (YOU DEBT) its their money not yours, all you produce is debt and other countries paying for your lifestyle, all you pay for if youre paying is INK to print paper and other countries paying tonnes of money investing into vault

      August 2, 2011 at 8:36 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Russ K

    Bin Laden? That... that's the name of the guy who attacked my country! The two must be related, having the same name and all. As an American, I am angry about this.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
  11. Marv

    So let's see, the Bin Laden group who cast out Osama is now vilified for continuing with their lives after casting out Osama? We want to do harm to folks who cast out Osama from their family? I thought not wanting OBL in your family is a good thing. Do all of you want OBL in your family? FAIL.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:17 am | Report abuse |
    • Autumn

      Thank you for pointing that out. Some people are so blind on here.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:34 am | Report abuse |
  12. douglas

    what a slap in the face!

    August 2, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  13. Reason

    Would it be considered irony if some American Christian extremists flew a plane into it?

    August 2, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
    • Moondawn

      Yes, it would be ironic.

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

      No, it would be considered just.

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

      'whoa – No, it would be considered just.'

      Wow that you think that crashing a plane into a tower, built by a company whose supposed 'crime' is that it is owned by family members of a terrorist, is a just action, is scary as hell.

      August 2, 2011 at 11:51 am | Report abuse |
    • whoa

      @Cedar – it's a damn good thing you weren't around on Dec 7, 1941. Am I vengeful – you bet your ass!!!

      August 2, 2011 at 12:01 pm | Report abuse |
    • collins61

      It would be considered, among many things, ironic. I would consider it Return Fire.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:05 pm | Report abuse |
    • collins61

      Don't wet yourself Cedar Rapids, it's going to get a lot worse before it gets better.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • James

      That's f***ed up. Kill a bunch of innocent people in retaliation for a group of barbarians doing the same? I would have liked to think that we Americans are on higher moral ground than barbaric terrorists. Perhaps I was wrong.

      Get over it, Bin Laden is dead and I was happy when that finally happened. His family already exiled him, I'm sure you're perfectly ok with being punished in the event one of your relatives commits a crime though?

      August 2, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • reality

      And than Muslims will have every reason to invade America and west.

      August 2, 2011 at 4:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • reality

      collins61
      Yes it is going to get worse and Nazis like you are going to get eliminated.

      August 2, 2011 at 4:29 pm | Report abuse |
  14. hahar

    It's a ruse...the damn thing is an ICBM – aimed at the USA.

    August 2, 2011 at 11:18 am | Report abuse |
  15. Flo

    GOD, Michael Fury, we don't want to read your stuff! Quit spamming, already! Hey, everybody, let's all go to Fury's website and post our own links to garbage! Let's start with penis enlargement and Viagra. Then, we'll start posting spam for Rolexes. Finally, we'll post
    For that Faye.org site for the woman who is 'fighting for her life'!
    What say, y'all?

    August 2, 2011 at 11:19 am | Report abuse |
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