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. Mr. Zeno

    Well maybe this is where the 9/11 hijackers got the idea. That said, I think the rest of what you say is fiction.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  2. AKent

    The BLG has reported to have no communication with nor support their terrorist relative. Just another construction company. So far, nobody has unearthed any facts to the contrary that I have read. Anybody?

    August 2, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
  3. kurtinco

    I wonder what it will take to bring it down.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • jonathan

      leave that to an American Terroist group from an American construction family to figure out!! 🙂 🙂 🙂

      August 2, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
    • realit

      Looks like its time to drone terrorist people like you.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  4. troll babalooey

    Caryle Group? Philip's here!

    August 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Larry

    go right ahead...I think you'll get a unanimous Darwin Award nomination.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Erin

    What a stupid, ignorant comment. If you had done any research (or knew anything about bin Laden) you'd have known his family renounced Osama bin Laden and wanted nothing to do with that; they made that clear several times to Western media. Don't hold his family accountable for the black sheep that ruined the family name. You're just like every other redneck who hears a name and thinks "Kill it! Kill it!"

    August 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Scott

    Wow, it's startling the number of people who either believe the conspiracy theories about the WTC's being imploded, or know nothing about the Bin Laden family (which was already really rich) disowning Osama because he was bat-crap crazy. *sarcasm font* Joe and Rob must believe that there were explosives built into the buildings and someone was just waiting to have the chance to push the button and bring it all crashing down. They are architects who know that EVERY building built over three stories since 1950 are just packed with TNT... just in case. *end sarcasm font*

    August 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Greenspam

      Disowning is an illusion. Officially he's disowned but some of the family members still kept contact with OBL when he was still alive. That's a fact.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
  8. aaron

    At least they aren't being asked to build two of them side by side.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • Moe Green

      From space it would look like Madonna's "like a virgin" cone bra

      August 2, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  9. Joe Kady

    BTW I am engineer in the aviation field and know a lot of the hidden secrets. Do the calculations! Pull the AMS spec around high strength steel and the maximum obtainable temperature of incomplete combustion of kerosene and you will find the THERE IS NO WAY IN HELL THAT THE STEEL BEAMS WERE WEAKENED EVEN A FRACTION OF WHAT WAS NEEDED TO WEAKEN THE STRUCTURE. But I realize that my attempts to educate my fellow American will go wasted. An average American will believe the moon is made of cheese if you drill it in their heads enough times.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
    • jonathan

      I 'm sorry but are you trying to imply that the moon is not made of cheese????? 🙂

      August 2, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • MB

      sure...except that you could see it happening...

      August 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • ozzie

      What about the fact that they never found the black boxes of both aircraft. Does that make sense to you? My guess they are sitting in some room somewhere filled with information someone does not want the general public to know. Here are my guesses: 1. they know the aircraft were hijacked earlier on than what its publicly admitted. This would be embarrassing for many govt organizations.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:27 pm | Report abuse |
    • Chaz

      Are you implying the moon isn't made of cheese?? Aw man... No wonder NASA was cut.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
    • Moe Green

      Hey Joe – Call mythbusters and ask them to build a 3-4 story replica and then simulate a crash (not just heat) and see what happens.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Moe Green

      I hope the moon is made of soy cheese... I am lactose intolerant

      August 2, 2011 at 12:30 pm | Report abuse |
    • Kevin

      But what you fail to understand is how the WTC was built and what the design was ment to do. This building was hit by a plane ( sorry but it was on TV) second it hit between floors so it created structure defects. When flloor A gave way it fell on floor B, by design this building was made to if the building ever came down one floor would slide down on top of the floor below and so on. The building performed perfectly. This is not what the wacko's in the plan wanted, they thought it would topple over but they also did not ubderstand how this building was built. I hate to tell you but your dead wrong.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:31 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mikey

      I still believe that an average american, if he or she put asside emotions and/or pride, would realize that it's a joke to even think that someone could bring down a building of billion pounds of steel 🙂 and certainly not the way we saw it crumbling....It's clearly insane to think that and you have to actually set bombs on each floor in sequence to be able to do it the way we all saw...

      August 2, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bubba Schmo

      So ..... how did the Trade Centers come down then???

      August 2, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
    • Bubba Schmo

      Oh wait .... I get it .... you're one of those 'Conspiracy Theory' freaks. .... never mind.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:36 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lokari

      People who are desperate to find evidence of a conspiracy point to the burning temperature of jet fuel and melting temperature of steel and say "Aha! Must have been a secret government cover-up!" But what else was in the towers? Well, lots and lots of stuff, including all sorts of mundane building materials that, when subjected to the heat of burning jet fuel could themselves have combusted, at temperatures high enough to weaken the steel structure. And keep in mind that the structure was already damaged by the force of the initial impact and explosions.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
    • chuckt

      Get a refund on your education idiot. They had show and demonstrated this could happen. Go find Obama's correct birth certificate.....oooh, i guess no one could ever forge a birth certificate. ....Too funny! I don't believe he was born anywhere else, but i do beleive he is a horrible president. Funny how people say Bush is an idiot, but he can plan to bring down buildings using TNT and fly planes into the building to hide the explosives. Bring on the white coats for you.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:38 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rethink

      As an aviation engineer with so much knowledge of office tower construction, do you design aircraft that run on kerosene? Is that part of your schematics in ALL CAPS? Can you also explain how kerosene could be "partially combusted"? Is that also in your field of aviation engineering? Does your aviation engineering background qualify you to comment on why no explosive residues were found after the collapse? And by the way, that comment about the cheese thing. That's just a low blow. You just don't go for the cheese thing. They should have taught you that in your aviation engineering courses.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott

      The material spec for the high strength steel's yield stress at 500-600F (temp range for open-air burning of kerosene type fuels Jet A and Jet A-1) are immaterial unless you know the load that it is trying to carry.
      But more to the point that you think the towers were intentionally brought down, when were the explosives installed in the WTC, and why would someone plan something like that? Or are you going to say that this was a coordinated effort between the guys flying the planes and someone with the access to plant the explosives? Also, please explain why the towers coming down looked like no other intentional demolition of any other building ever seen? See, there's usually a series of explosions that weaken key points of the structure leading to the collapse. That didn't happen with the WTC.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:44 pm | Report abuse |
    • boy1der88

      ...and the average know-it-all engineer will spew unsubstantiated facts at an alarming rate just to try to prove how more intelligent he/she is than you.
      You, my friend, are an idiot...

      August 2, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dave

      I am a smarter engineer than you (apparently) and realize that when a building is on fire, its not just the "fuel" that is burning. I also realize that with increased heat due to fire, steel weakens, and creep sets in, leading to increased loads and deflections on supporting structures, resulting in ultimate failure. Go back to school.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mikey

      Chuckt

      A plane hitting the tower is like a mosquito poking your skin. A plane could have damaged the building , but certainly not initiating a crumbling. And you need bombs on every floor to be able to do that.
      Think !!! Think!!! brother

      August 2, 2011 at 12:48 pm | Report abuse |
    • Mikey

      Scott –

      See you just hinted to the use of bombs because common sense will also tell you that you need bombs, a lot of them even, to bring that building down to dust the way we have seen it.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:52 pm | Report abuse |
    • boy1der88

      being the conductor on the tram between concourses at your local international airport does not qualify you as an "engineer in the aviation field"...

      What a moron.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:54 pm | Report abuse |
    • Scott

      Joe, I'm not so sure about anyone believing that the moon is made of cheese, but conspiracy nut-jobs such as yourself will easily believe that we never went to the moon.

      Mikey, why would it take "bombs on every floor"? The buildings weighed thousands of tons each, and enough of that weight was above where the damage from the plane crash and fires occurred that the weakened and heated structure couldn't support that weight. Even if the damage were just one or two floors that collapsed on top of each other, the resulting IMPACT of the collapse would be too much for the floors below to support. (To simplify, a static structure is not designed to take such high dynamic loads, from either the impact or from the localized collapse where the damage was).

      August 2, 2011 at 1:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Rethink

      Bombs = airplanes, full of jet fuel, traveling at hundreds of miles per hour.

      August 2, 2011 at 1:06 pm | Report abuse |
    • BoDacious01

      Also, it takes weeks/months to prep a building for demolition to set explosives etc..... That is why I am amazed that on Sept 11th after all the havoc created by World Trade Center Bldg #1 and #2 collapsing that somehow they could manage to demolish World Trade Center bldg #7....
      Three interesting things about this building.....First, it was demolished with explosives; Two, if it takes so long to prep a building how could they do it in a couple hours; Finally, if they can do it in a couple of hours is it a far stretch to suggest someone could plant explosives in the other buildings if they had 6months or 1 year to prepare?

      It is a conundrum people.....What happened to building #7?

      August 2, 2011 at 1:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • 911Insidejob

      Amen brother

      August 2, 2011 at 2:25 pm | Report abuse |
    • 911Insidejob

      For all you sheep out there...my post was for Joe Kady

      August 2, 2011 at 2:26 pm | Report abuse |
  10. AKILEZ

    $1.2 Billion dollars can feed a lot of Hungry muslim people of Somalia and other muslims countries in Africa.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:19 pm | Report abuse |
  11. troll babalooey

    Why should the BLG have to change their name, whoa? Did your family change theirs when YOU were born?

    August 2, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Ahmed

    You are thinking in the same way as those who want to do harm to the US because, in their ignorance, they associate ANYTHING AMERICAN with evil. One would expect us to be more discerning.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:21 pm | Report abuse |
  13. Brad

    This is an Insult to the USA, Its not rite nor is it fair. As an American citizen, I feel this this country is being betrayed. I am surprised that the Saudis would participate in this. The money we pay for oil goes to them. Someone has to stand up and say this is wrong!!!

    August 2, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • Lokari

      How is this an insult? The family of a madman, who had disowned said madman long ago, is practicing good old fashioned capitalism and erecting a building. I fail to see anything insulting about it.

      August 2, 2011 at 12:41 pm | Report abuse |
  14. GCDb

    I hope they don't get used to that oil money. It's finite just like the oil itself. Then what will they do for a buck?

    August 2, 2011 at 12:23 pm | Report abuse |
  15. erich2112x

    Gas up the drones.

    August 2, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
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