Office of the Future, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

To demonstrate how 3D-printing technology can potentially revolutionize the built environment by reducing cost, time and environmental impact, the Dubai Future Foundation (DFF) embarked on designing and building the world’s first fully functioning 3D-printed building in 2016.

Today, the “Office of the Future” is situated on the campus of Dubai’s “Museum of the Future” and helps to highlight Dubai’s goal to become the global hub of 3D printing by 2030.

Syska Dubai, Chicago and Shanghai proudly partnered with Gensler, Thornton Tomasetti and international consultants to design, print, assemble and fit out this modern workplace. The complicated nature of 3D-printed construction requires a fundamentally different approach to MEP engineering and lighting design.

The “Office of the Future” boasts 2,691-sf of flexible space designed to foster communication and collaboration and provide ample room for exhibitions and other events. Because 3D technology hadn’t yet been used in construction, we worked with the local authorities to help establish and approve our plans. The result was a smarter building that reduced energy consumption with:

  • Energy-efficient HVAC variable refrigerant volume (VRV) systems.
  • Responsive LED lighting.
  • Solar shading to protect from direct sunlight and keep the building cool.
  • Tree-shaded outdoor garden deck.

Construction was done with the world’s largest 3D printer—20 ft tall, 120 ft long, and 40 ft wide—which used a robotic arm to layer three unique innovative materials. The floors, wall and ceiling were printed layer-by-layer in 17 unique 2D modules, which were then cut in half, shipped to Dubai, and then assembled on site.

From start to finish, construction took only 17 days and required only 18 team members. Compared to a conventional building of similar size, the production time, construction waste and labor costs were all cut by more than 50 percent.

The “Office of the Future” is a proof-of-concept example of how 3D printing has the potential to permanently transform the way we build, work and live.

2,600 sf

UAE Prime Minister’s Office

Owner’s Rep

Gensler/Killa Design

China State Construction Engineering Corporation

MEP/fire protection
Sustainable design
Security master planning
HVAC variable refrigerant volume (VRV) systems
Responsive LED lighting
Solar shading