Abu Dhabi, UAE, 2009
UNStudio's original design for twofour54’s Mena Zayed presented a bold waterfront development, which made use of the prominent position near the city’s Corniche to celebrate and support the growing cultural and community spirit that is currently growing throughout Abu Dhabi.
The 600,000 m2 media precinct was designed to house an integrated digital environment, allowing the public to interact and experience a true content creation community and provide an environment designed to inspire creativity. The design for the Mena Zayed precinct incorporates state of the art studios and post production facilities; a specialist training academy; offices and conference facilities; and the new Abu Dhabi Media Company headquarters all supported by hotels, retail, restaurants and residential units.
Twofour54, the company driving Abu Dhabi’s development as a centre of excellence for world-class Arabic media and entertainment content, is putting the physical and intellectual infrastructure in place to create an ecosystem where businesses including broadcast, digital media, gaming, publishing, music and film can create world-class Arabic content in a creative environment. The announcement of the new 600,000m² bespoke media precinct, which would house more than 12,000 media specialists, was a clear statement of intent in twofour54’s ambitions to be regarded as the home of the region’s creative industries.
In 2009 UNStudio won the design competition for the development of Zone 1, however a change in location has necessitated a design update which is currently taking place.
Location: Abu Dhabi
Building surface: Program podium and towers 245.000 m²
Basement parking 141.000 m² (2 levels)
Building site: 71.695 m²
Program: Studio complex with media training facilities, hotel and office towers
Status: Design update in progress
Competition phase: Ben van Berkel, Astrid Piber with Arjan Dingste and Filippo Lodi, Jesper Christensen, Joerg Petri, Kristin Sandner, Mirko Bergmann, Sander Versluis, Stefano Rochetti
CD, SD, DD phases: Ben van Berkel, Astrid Piber with Nuno Almeida and Albert Gnodde, Andreas Bogenschütz, Ariane Stracke, Chiara Marchionni, Jeong Eun Choi, Florian Licht, Ger Gijzen, Gustav Fagerström, Iris Pastor, Jaap Baselmans, Jaap-Willem Kleijwegt, Jay Williams, Ka Shin Liu, Kristin Sandner, Margherita Del Grosso, Martin Zangerl, Mirko Bergmann, Patrick Noome, René Rijkers, Rob Henderson, Silvia Filucchi, Stefano Rocchetti, Thomas van Bekhoven
Executive Architect: Adamson Associates International, Toronto, Canada
Public Spaces: Diller Scofidio + Renfro, New York, USA
Broadcast Designer: Janson + Tsai Design Associates, Ridgefield, USA
Systems Engineering: Buro Happold, New York, USA