Double-Decker Elevators Shoot Up World’s Tallest Building At Top Speeds

Double-Decker Elevators Shoot Up World’s Tallest Building At Top Speeds

Just one of many exciting highlights at the Prince of Saudi Arabia's Kingdom Tower development.

Amanda Johnstone
  • 23 june 2014

Higher. Faster. Better. Saudi Prince and Chairman of Kingdom Holding Company, HRH Prince Alwaleed Bin Talal Bin Abdulaziz Alsaud, announced that his development, the 1.2 billion dollar Kingdom Tower in Jeddah, will not only be the highest tower in the world, but will also boast the highest observation deck and the fastest double deck lifts.

The double-deckers will be manufactured by the Kone Corporation, which will supply seven such elevators for the tower. These DoubleDeck MiniSpace elevators are one of the smartest designs in people flow in recent years, doubling the amount of passengers by stacking two carriages on top of each other while functioning on the same infrastructure.


The Kingdom Tower, soon to be the world’s tallest at over one kilometer high, is currently under construction as part of the 20 billion dollar Kingdom City development, which spans over 5.3 million square meters. The elevators featured in the structure are projected to be the fastest and highest double-decker elevators on the planet which will travel at a projected speed of between 10 and 12.5 meters per second. That will not be the buildings only trophy; The skyscraper will feature the world’s highest elevator rise and the world’s tallest observation deck, which will overlook the Red Sea and Obhur Creek.


Kingdom Tower will be a mixed use building, incorporating offices, residential luxury apartments and a Four Seasons hotel and is being built by the Saudi Bin Laden Group.

“We are confident that upon completion, Kingdom Tower will become one of the world’s great tourist destinations as well as one of the most attractive places to live and work in the region,” said project partners and Jeddah businessmen Mr. Sharbatly and Mr. Bakhsh on the company website.

PSFK-Double-Decker-Elevator-Saudi-Arabia-Fastest-Highest-Tower-Freedom-City 3.png

The Tower is designed by an interdisciplinary group led by Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG), based in Chicago. As stated in a release on the AS+GG company website Mr. Smith said, “this tower symbolizes the Kingdom as an important global business and cultural leader, and demonstrates the strength and creative vision of its people. It represents new growth and high-performance technology fused into one powerful iconic form.”

Smith’s experience in super-tall tower design includes Burj Khalifa, Jin Mao Tower in Shanghai, Zifeng Tower at Nanjing Greenland Financial Center in Nanjing, the Trump International Hotel & Tower in Chicago and Pearl River Tower.

A trophy project perhaps? It certainly seems the Saudi Prince is leveraging the development to reposition Jeddah as the new business and cultural mecca. Major delays have occurred in the build since the commencement. If such delays arise again, it could mean bragging rights may be superseded by project completion. On the contrary, KHC said “The construction of Kingdom Tower continues on its strategic path” in a recent statement, with tower development expected for completion in 2018.



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