Dredging and marine contractor Van Oord has completed the prestigious land reclamation project The World in the emirate of Dubai. The World is a group of 300 artificial islands four km off the coast of Dubai that have been shaped in the form of the continents. The project covers a surface area of 9 x 7 km and was completed in the record time of little more than four years. The islands can now provide the setting for hotels, apartments and villas. This is the next immense project, visible from space.
Project execution commenced in October 2003. Fifteen trailing suction hopper dredgers have reclaimed a total of 320 million m3 of sand from the sea to form the islands. For comparison purposes: that is the equivalent of a 2 m wide, 4 m high Chinese Wall that stretches around the world. In addition, 34 million tonnes of stone have been used to construct the longest breakwater in the world, a 27 km long structure protecting the islands from the sea. That is four times the amount of stone used to build the Oosterscheldt storm surge barrier.
For a number of years Van Oord will continue to be closely involved in the remainder of this project. According to Hamza Mustaffa, the managing director of Nakheel, Van Oord‘s client, ‘We intend to continue our successful collaboration in the years ahead.’ Van Oord’s work will include compacting the subsoil and building quay walls.
Van Oord is working on several marine construction projects in Dubai. Following the first palm island, the much-discussed Palm Jumeirah, The World was the next extraordinary land reclamation project that Van Oord completed in Dubai. Palm Deira, a colossal islands project ten times the size of Palm Jumeirah, is still under construction and will be completed in 2014-2015.
Van Oord is building tomorrow's infrastructure around the world. Its core activities are dredging, offshore services, coastal construction, and infrastructure (marine and land-based). The company has 4,000 employees worldwide working in more than 26 countries. Van Oord has a large, state-of-the-art fleet that is currently being expanded on a massive scale. The challenges associated with climate change, the global increase in goods transport, and the growing demand for oil and gas are giving Van Oord the opportunity to boost its leading position in dredging and marine construction.
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