Dubai Mall Skin Consulting Services in Dubai, UAE.

Dubai Mall Facade Construction Support



During the final stages of construction, Thornton Tomasetti provided on-site façade engineering and engineering services to the contracting team for the award-winning Dubai Mall. The high-end retail and entertainment complex has a gross floor area of more than 5.9 million square feet and houses 1,200 retail spaces, 160 food and beverage outlets, an Olympic-sized ice rink, and a 22-screen Cineplex. Located at the base of the Burj Khalifa, one of the tallest buildings in the world, Dubai Mall is one of the world’s largest shopping centers; welcoming more than 37 million visitors a year.

The various facade systems include lightweight precast panels, tensioned fabric, aluminum curtain walls, canopies, cladding, point-supported glass atria, stainless steel trusses, vertical bi-folding steel and glass doors, and extensive secondary steel support structures. Our building skin specialists assisted with design, engineering, and technical review of numerous critical path systems, as needed during the final stages of construction. Additionally, investigation and post-failure engineering analysis was performed for one of the point-supported glass atria.

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Façade Materials & Systems


Composite materials – fiber reinforced plastics (FRP), glass fiber reinforced concrete (GFRC) and polycarbonate – make for elegant, lightweight and cost-effective enclosures. These materials are well-suited for use in stadiums and long-span buildings, both in new construction and for re-roofing existing structures. Most composites adapt to nearly any complex shape and are available in an array of thicknesses and finish options, from translucent to opaque. Using our 3D form-finding and optimization tools, we can adapt commercial systems or develop customized solutions.

Façade Materials & Systems


New technologies have transformed concrete – traditionally a heavy material used for structural elements – into a material that can be used on façades. When reinforced with glass fiber, concrete makes lightweight cladding panels that provide the textures of traditional material with a new flexibility of use. Precast concrete offers efficient panelization and range of finishes and embedment options such as brick or stone. We have experience applying these systems and can use that knowledge to help our clients select the most effective solution for their project.

Façade Materials & Systems

Curtain Wall

Our façade engineering teams advise clients on the best way to develop both conventional and innovative façade systems, applying our knowledge of structures, glazing technology, mechanical shade systems and thermal behavior. We provide design, detailing and engineering support for enclosures of any shape or size, from minimalist to high-tech. We also provide expertise in safety and security glazing, along with glass frits and reflective coatings.

Façade Materials & Systems

ETFE & Fabrics

The use of lightweight membrane structures can enhance design, budget and building performance – but only if their attributes are considered early in the design process. With the ability to span great distances, these systems are used in dynamic and sculptural forms and can be quickly modified to meet changing weather-related or programmatic needs by adjusting shading, thermal and aesthetic characteristics. Our façade engineering consultants are experts in the application of ETFE, fabric and tensioned membranes, from concept evaluation to integration of these lightweight systems into building skin designs.

Façade Materials & Systems

Glazing & Structural Glass

Glazing offers transparency that enhances a façade’s aesthetics and experience from both the interior and exterior. It provides light and a visual connection between the inside and outside. But designing with glass requires the deliberate balancing of light transmittance and the effects it has on energy performance and occupant comfort. Glazing design also requires careful consideration of material strength and safety. We provide a full range of design and engineering support for glazing and glass structures, from structural analyses to recommendations for aesthetics and energy performance. Our expertise in glazed-façade and structural-glass construction includes unitized aluminum frames, stick-built metal frames, steel cable supports, structural glass fin supports and glass stairs and balustrades.

Façade Materials & Systems


Operable systems provide flexibility of use of a space, increase energy performance and enhance occupant comfort. Ranging from retractable roofs to operable screens on a façade, they can open or enclose a space and increase or decrease sun exposure. Some are automatic; others rely on manual control. Many can be incorporated into other façade systems. Our engineers work with designers to create custom solutions for building envelopes that satisfy performance requirements while giving owners the visual and experiential effects they desire.

Façade Materials & Systems


A variety of metals are used to wrap a building’s skin: aluminum, stainless steel, copper and zinc are notable examples. Each has its own special characteristics and can be used as rainscreen cladding, open screens, overhead enclosures or decorative elements with an array of possible shapes and configurations. We have used metals in a variety or project types, ranging from new façades to innovative re-cladding of existing structures. Our understanding of each material’s physical properties helps us provide designers with unique solutions that fulfill their design visions.