DEWA competition scheme
International design competition for new headquarters building
In 2016, our engineers worked with UK architect HKR on an entry for an international competition to design a new headquarters building in Dubai for DEWA, the Dubai Electricity & Water Authority. The scheme reached the final shortlist.

We worked closely with HKR in London, attending interviews in Dubai and co-ordinating with Whitby Mohajer Engineers (WME), our sister practice, which provided building services engineering.

The DEWA brief called for the design of a building of international standing that brought together DEWA’s various departments and functions. A primary requirement was for a net zero energy building, powered using energy generated on site.

The proposed site is adjacent to a station on the Dubai Metro, with high level pedestrian links. The competition team looked very closely at the specified overall size of the building and at inter-departmental relationships within DEWA, proposing to achieve the brief with a smaller building, compartmentalised for energy saving operation. We proposed a steel frame solution for greater flexibility of use — an relatively unusual approach for commercial buildings in the UAE.

The entry reached the competition final shortlist of four schemes, and was the only UK-led team to do so.

Dubai, UAE
HKR Architects


Structural engineering
Geotechnical engineering
Civil engineering



renderings : HKR Architects