The contract was awarded to local Al-Fouzan General Contracting Co. and the work is to be finished within 12 months, Jeddah Economic Co, the consortium behind the project, said in a statement late on Wednesday.
Construction of the Jeddah Tower, originally projected to cost $1.2 billion, has been underway for several years and officials have previously said the building will be finished by 2020. In its statement, Jeddah Economic Company did not say whether that timetable was still on track.
The project, conceived when the Saudi economy was booming, now faces a more difficult environment, as the country’s real estate market is slumping due to tough economic conditions caused by low oil prices.
The Jeddah Tower is projected to be over 1,000 meters (3,281 feet) tall, eclipsing Dubai’s Burj Khalifa, which is over 828 meters.
Jeddah Economic Company CEO Mounib Hammoud said the implementation of the advanced infrastructure was considered an essential step in positioning this mega development as a world-class project.
“The works are going according to the set timeframe and soon, plots of land will be available and ready for development by local and international investors with all support services and utilities that includes: state-of-the-art infrastructure, district cooling, gas networks, streets furnishing and finishing, generous public open spaces, gardens and other elements of an environmentally friendly smart city,” Hammoud said in the statement.
“The project offers the tallest tower in the world, a sustainable mixed-use environment, residential apartments for most budgets, a tourism retail and leisure destination and a business center. Jeddah Economic City Project will anchor the growth of Jeddah and will offer thousands of job opportunities for young Saudis in various fields.”