Dubai – MENA Herald: The pressure on the UAE and the rest of the GCC countries to focus on new low-energy architecture will increase over the next eight years as billions of dollars are ploughed into infrastructure development across the region, new research shows.

According to a regional market study issued today, spending on building exteriors will increase from US$8 billion this year to US$12 billion in 2024. Accounting for 41.8% of the overall façades market last year, Saudi Arabia alone is estimated to grow to US$5.5 billion by 2024, up from US$3 billion this year.

Architects and developers need to prioritise lower heating and air conditioning costs to achieve energy efficiency, says the report which was commissioned by dmg events Middle East, Asia and Africa, organisers of the Windows, Doors and Façades trade exhibition launching in Dubai in September.

The study says significant growth in the GCC façades market will stem from a big rise in the number of construction, refurbishment and renovation projects driven by tourism and major events like the 2019 World Athletics Championships in Doha, Expo 2020 Dubai and the 2022 FIFA World Cup.

Issued by US-based market research and consulting specialists Grand View Research, it points to a major opportunity for architects, developers, and manufacturers who will assemble in force at Dubai World Trade Centre for the inaugural Windows, Doors & Façades event from 18-20 September.

The study estimates increased spending on façades in the other Gulf countries between this year and 2024 as follows: UAE – US$2 billion to US$3 billion; Qatar – US$1 billion to US$2 billion; Kuwait – US$603 million to US$825 million; Oman – US$434 million to US$535 million; and Bahrain – US$226 million to US$305 million.

“The key factor expected to drive the façades industry is the need to lower heating and air conditioning cost and achieve greater energy-efficiency,” said Muhammed Kazi, Exhibition Director of Windows, Doors & Façades. “Façades give buildings a superior look which is a big priority for corporate headquarters. But these impressive glass fronted buildings consume the highest energy and regulating their temperature is a big task.

“With massive development scheduled in the region, despite the decline in oil prices, there is now a big opportunity for architects and other design professionals in the GCC countries. This is especially the case in the UAE which is the region’s largest user of energy on a per capita basis, with 70 per cent of primary energy usage through buildings, mainly due to air-conditioning and lighting.”

The Windows, Doors & Façades exhibition will showcase a wide range of products for optimising energy retention and management, which vary from embedding the use of plants into the design of buildings, using minimal sliding doors, automated layered glazed panels as well as digital, interactive façades, already popular in major cities around the world.

The exhibition line-up includes Gutmann Systems Middle East, part of the German-based Gutmann group which, in addition to its regional hub and design and logistic facility strongly present in Dubai, has recently set up another regional office in Beirut in order to have a wider reach in the region and adapt its aluminium profiles and building systems for the market.

Samer Noureddine, the General Manager for the Beirut based Gutmann Lebanon, said: “Both Dubai and Beirut are currently two major hubs where the architecture of the future is being shaped, implemented and exported to other countries in the region.

“We’re aware of the needed developments to meet increasing and changing challenges, and have set up a highly qualified and experienced design department in the UAE to be able to develop and adapt our products to changing and evolving industry needs, namely answering to sophisticated esthetical requirements of the architects with energy efficient and cost effective and competitive systems.”

With hundreds of windows, door and façades products being showcased, the region’s only dedicated exhibition will also feature 12 CPD certified workshops as well as the free-to-attend ‘Middle East Façades Summit’ where international experts will unveil high-tech exterior design solutions tailored for the region. The event will take place at Dubai World Trade Centre from 18-20 September.