UAE Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

UAE Pavilion at Expo 2020 Dubai

Santiago Calatrava as Architects

Serving as the host country’s pavilion and the anchor for Expo 2020 in the Opportunity District, the UAE Pavilion reveals an immersive experience for guests to discover the UAE’s history and future. The design is inspired by the majestic falcon, the national bird of the United Arab Emirates. Continuing to pay homage to the UAE’s heritage, the Calatrava team drew inspiration from the traditional Bedouin tent, incorporating such elements into the building’s elevation in honor and recognition of life in the desert and the local sustainable solutions associated with it. The sloped geometry of the roof and the floating wings create visual and outward connections that welcome visitors approaching the UAE Pavilion from all directions.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

Landscaped spaces surrounding the UAE Pavilion on all sides allow for an effortless flow of pedestrian movement toward the UAE Pavilion, while strategically aligned bridges orient the main entrance toward the heart of the EXPO master plan, the Al Wasl Plaza. The layout of the UAE Pavilion site is inspired by the image of the Aton Sun, providing opportunities for visitors to approach the pavilion from all angles and to allow the surrounding areas of the pavilion to gently integrate with its immediate surroundings.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

The Garden at the basement level, which provides access to the lower level of the Pavilion, offers a cool and tranquil environment with large water pools and trees naturally cooling the air, creating shade, and reducing reflected heat, making this space a sunken refuge from direct exposure to the extreme climatic conditions.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

An immersive multi-sensory visitor experience inside the UAE Pavilion guides visitors through the ‘Land of Dreamers Who Do’ through authentic human stories, with the goal of fostering a sense of connectedness, encouraging global and local stakeholders to collaborate with the UAE and invite the world to experience UAE’s story first-hand.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

Sustainability is at the heart of the design, which incorporates elements that are energy efficient, reduce water consumption, optimize indoor air quality, include regional materials and native species, and others. The UAE Pavilion is certified LEED Platinum and is compliant with the Dubai Green Building Regulations and Specifications (DGBR). Furthermore, the UAE Pavilion will be repurposed for cultural uses in the country for years to come.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg

Additional architectural features of the UAE Pavilion include:
● The Pavilion spans across an area of 15,000 meters (over 161,000 square feet) and 27.8 meters in height, the largest Pavilion at Expo 2020.
● An Oculus skylight at the apex of the roof which mirrors the form of the Expo 2020 logo.
● 28 movable ‘wings’ that make up the roof, which can fully open within three minutes, positioning themselves anywhere between 110 and 125 degrees.
● When open, the wings reveal a surface grid of photovoltaic panels. The panels have been designed to absorb the maximum amount of sunlight to harvest energy which is returned to the main power grid. When closed, the wings shelter and protect the photovoltaic panels from rain and sandstorms.
● A sphere shaped, multi-faceted auditorium located in the center, serves as both a centerpiece and functional space with a capacity of 200 people.
● The space displays a symbolic interpretation of the flow of movement through the articulation of carefully planned lines and crafted spaces.
● Landscaped areas with thousands of plants from 12 different species, eight of which are native, as well as over 80 trees, with approximately 45 of the trees holding cultural importance for the UAE.

photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
photo_credit Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
Palladium Photodesign - Oliver Schuh + Barbara Burg
photo_credit Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava
photo_credit Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava
photo_credit Santiago Calatrava
Santiago Calatrava
Products Behind Projects
Product Spotlight
News
Sanjay Puri, Dominique Petit-Frere, Emre Arolat and Yenny Zhang join Archello Awards 2024 jury
23 May 2024 Archello Awards
Sanjay Puri, Dominique Petit-Frere, Emre Arolat and Yenny Zhang join Archello Awards 2024 jury

Sanjay Puri, Dominique Petit-Frere, Emre Arolat and Yenny Zhang have been announced as Archello Awar... More

Storefront in Amsterdam by Dok architecten features sculpted facade of hand-molded bricks
23 May 2024 News
Storefront in Amsterdam by Dok architecten features sculpted facade of hand-molded bricks

The Italian fashion brand Dolce & Gabbana has opened a store in Amsterdam's P.C. Hooftstraat ret... More

Prokš Přikryl Architekti converts historic grain silo into multifunctional conference and art space
22 May 2024 News
Prokš Přikryl Architekti converts historic grain silo into multifunctional conference and art space

Prague-based Prokš Přikryl Architekti has converted the grain silo of a historic mill buildin... More

Surman Weston veils self-build Peckham House in hit-and-miss brickwork
21 May 2024 News
Surman Weston veils self-build Peckham House in hit-and-miss brickwork

London-based architectural studio Surman Weston has completed its first self-build project in the vi... More

Key projects by Woods Bagot
21 May 2024 News
Key projects by Woods Bagot

Woods Bagot is a global architecture firm known for its diverse portfolio of forward-thinking and su... More

Filippo Taidelli Architetto designs transparent “knowledge hangar” near Milan
20 May 2024 News
Filippo Taidelli Architetto designs transparent “knowledge hangar” near Milan

Milan-based Filippo Taidelli Architetto designed the Roberto Rocca Innovation Building as part of th... More

Klaksvik Rowing Clubhouse by Henning Larsen celebrates Faroese sporting and cultural heritage
20 May 2024 News
Klaksvik Rowing Clubhouse by Henning Larsen celebrates Faroese sporting and cultural heritage

Danish architectural firm Henning Larsen features in Archello’s 25 best architecture firms in... More

WOODlife’s floors and finishes add warmth and texture to Oslo House
17 May 2024 News
WOODlife’s floors and finishes add warmth and texture to Oslo House

Dutch flooring brand WOODlife was included in Archello’s list of 25 best engineered wood floor... More