Louvre Abu Dhabi

Structural Designer

BuroHappold Engineering

Client Name

Tourism Development & Investment Company (TDIC)


Saadiyat Island, Abu Dhabi

Arabtec, Constructora San José and Oger Abu Dhabi (ASO - consortium)

Jean Nouvel

Waagner Biro Images: © Philip Handforth & Mohamed Somji


The Louvre Abu Dhabi's 180m span steel dome appears to float above a collection of gallery buildings. The intricate dome is composed of 11,000 elements and over 2,000 connections supported on only four bearings. 

Judge's comment:

The great success of the Louvre Abu Dhabi is to achieve the 180m diameter dome roof structure that is so fully integrated with the architecture that the distinction is hard to draw. From the concept stages defining the geometry of the roof layers and analysing the light filtering effect to the final detailing and consideration of construction process, the engineers must be credited for bringing a painstaking level of attention to detail, more usually associated with smaller-scale architectural engineering, to the design of a structure of such scale featuring 11,000 individual structural elements. Beyond this, the support of the roof on just four points around its circumference presented special challenges beyond those usually encountered with dome structures and these were managed with skill and aplomb by the engineers.

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