Architecture, Burj Khalifa, Dubai, Skidmore Owings & Merrill, SOM, Thomas Behr, US design firms, Uwe Nienstedt Middle East

Burj Khalifa architects SOM to open Dubai office

Skidmore, Owings & Merrill (SOM) has announced the official opening of its new office in Dubai which will serve as a regional hub to provide a full range of architecture, design, and planning services.

Thomas Behr, MENA managing partner, will oversee the region, while Uwe Nienstedt, senior regional manager, will lead the office operations in Dubai.

“Our new office allows SOM to build upon decades of experience in the Middle East. By establishing a formal presence in Dubai—an important business centre for the region—we are better equipped to serve our local clients, to work with consultants and officials, and to further develop our design and technical expertise specific to the region,” Behr said.

In addition to business development and project management capabilities, the office will provide urban planning services through SOM’s City Design Practice.

Having worked in the Middle East for nearly 60 years, SOM has planned, designed and built more than 180 projects.

These include the master plan for King Abdullah Economic City in Saudi Arabia, the master plan for Bahrain Bay in Manama, Bahrain, Four Seasons Hotel in Manama, Bahrain, Al Hamra Tower in Kuwait City, Kuwait – and the Burj Khalifa in Dubai, currently the world’s tallest building.

All of these projects respond to the region’s climate, with energy conservation and sun protection strategies incorporated into their design. They also reflect the rich traditions of Islamic culture and building design.