Precast tech vital in Dubai’s green vision

Dr Ahmad Belhasa and Abdulla Mohammad Rafi attend the Precast for All ConferenceImage Credit: Courtesy of UAE Contractors’ Association

As construction activities continue to gain momentum across the UAE, precast construction technology will play an important role in realising long-term  sustainability goals. Abdulla Mohammad Rafi, Dubai Municipality’s Assistant Director of Planning and Engineering, told participants of last week’s third anual Precast for All Conference in Dubai that precast will contribute to achieving Dubai’s goal of becoming the most sustainable city by 2020.

“The UAE has made unprecedented progress in the construction industry over recent times, this event is another signal of the country’s intent to continue to help shape the debate going forward,” Rafi said.

Vital role

The conference is the largest precast-specific construction event in the Middle East, bringing together developers, contractors and the industry’s precast experts.

“We are delighted to have brought together so many eminent precast experts on what was an illuminating day, which explored many of the industry’s crucial  opportunities and challenges,” said Rafi. “The experience and expertise of our speakers came out clearly in the excellent and revealing presentations they each delivered.”

Dr Ahmad Belhasa, Chairman of the UAE Contractors Association, also noted the vital role of precast in water, electricity and communication investments in accordance with global environmental standards.

Precast makes up around 30 per cent of the UAE’s concrete market, according to Matthew Palmer, General Manager of United Precast Concrete, who was one of the speakers. He expects precast to continue to gain market share as more developers and contractors appreciate its advantages in cost and time — precast is around 10 per cent cheaper and is much faster to manufacture compared to other alternatives.

Significant benefits

This translates to reduced construction time, fewer workers on-site, less waste material and minimised costs due to snagging issues. Professor Abid Abu-Tair, who also spoke at the event, pointed out that precast delivers social, environmental and economic benefits. The Professor of Structural Engineering at the British  University in Dubai and visiting research scholar of the Manchester School of Mechanical, Aerospace and Civil Engineering, said precast is a key enabler of renewable energy technologies, creating significant environmental benefits.

Source: Property Weekly


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