Foster + Partners confirms the opening of its regional office in d3

The Index – “a vertical city quarter with a population of around 6,000 residents and workers on a 20,000 sq m site” – is a slender building with 25 floors of office space and 40 levels of apartments. The design maximises the environmental benefits of a compact, high rise form with an efficient design that reduces the need for mechanical cooling systems and artificial lighting

It actually happened a while ago, but Foster + Partners has formally press-released the opening of its new office in Dubai Design District.

“The opening of our new office in the city reflects our commitment and belief in Dubai as a centre for design and innovation,” said Gerard Evenden, Head of Studio. “Dubai is emerging as global hub for the design and construction industry, exemplified by the varied scope and breadth of our projects in the region.”

Foster + Partners has actually been working on projects in the region for two decades. Highlights are the 80-floor Index Tower on the edge of DIFC, commissioned in 2004 but opened only in 2011; the new Apple Dubai Mall store, which opened in April 2017; and ICD Brookfield Place, an elegant chamfered glass office development that is scheduled for later this year.

The studio is also working on the Dubai Design District phase two extension (above), which includes the building for the Dubai Institute of Design and Innovation; the design for the Zayed National Museum on Saadiyat Island (stalled, but spectacular); and the swooping Mobility Pavilion, one of three ‘theme’ pavilions by starchitects for Expo 2020.

It looks as though the Dubai office will be headed by Dara Towhidi, who spent a few years in the UAE overseeing the Index and Zayed National Museum projects before a stint in London; and Andrew King, who’s been here since 2009 working primarily on the Zayed National Museum.

Foster + Partners’ trefoil design for the Expo 2020 Mobility Pavilion is bold: in elevation it appears to defy gravity, soaring upwards and outwards like a bowl


The Zayed National Museum’s five distinctive towers echo the wingtips of the falcon and minimise energy usage by incorporating natural ventilation and lighting


ICD Brookfield Place is a mixed-use development that includes a 53-storey office tower and a 14,000 sq m retail centre connected by pedestrian pathways and landscaping. The office tower is on target to achieve a LEED Gold rating

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