Home Biggest projects Project Timelines Construction of the Iconic Tower and all you need to know

Construction of the Iconic Tower and all you need to know

The Iconic Tower is under construction and located in the New Administrative Capital of Egypt. When completed, the US$3 billion 385.8 metres skyscraper will be Africa’s tallest building. The building, which will have 80 floors, is one of 20 towers and skyscrapers being built as part of the Central Business District (CBD) project in the new capital city. It will mainly be used as an office building.

The tower is surrounded by several towers in the CBD and overlooks all main roads. The building will include an integrated complex of all services that will occupy an area of around 240,000 metres (790,000 ft). The entire tower has a total area of more than 7,100,000 meters. In recent years there have been a number of contenders for the title of Africa’s tallest tower, including The Leonardo in Sandton (227 metres (745 ft), and the Bank of Africa Tower in Rabat, Morocco (250 metres (820 ft). However, none under construction surpasses the Iconic Tower, which also beats the currently tallest planned Pinnacle Towers scheme (300 metres (980 ft) in Nairobi, Kenya. Also built by the same developer of the Iconic Tower.

The project was designed by Dar al-Handasah Shair & Partners and is being developed by the Egyptian Ministry of Housing. The building’s design was inspired by the shape of a pharaonic obelisk with glass exterior. The projected is expected to be completed in January 2022. Upon completion, it will be 80 stories tall, overtaking The Leonardo in South Africa (tallest building in Africa from 2019-2020) and surpassing Johannesburg’s Carlton Center, which has been Africa’s tallest building from 1973-2019.

Construction is being undertaken by China State Construction Engineering Corporation(CSCEC), and is expected to be a major pillar for the China-proposed Belt and Road Initiative(BRI) that seeks win-win development cooperation between participating states through economic and trade partnership as well as infrastructure projects.

The tower will comprise 60 residential buildings, divided into 1,840 fully finished apartments, alongside 98 villas, divided as townhouses, twin houses, and standalone units. Egypt faces a persistent housing shortage, with population growth outstripping the supply of affordable residential units.

The new administrative capital will also include pioneering sustainability technology to create new villa concepts called I-Villas. The apartments, sized from 100 sq m to 500 sq m, have been designed to resemble villas. Each unit will have its entrance, green space, and parking.

According to CSCEC’s general manager in Egypt, Chang Weicai, construction of the New Administrative Capital will involve five thousand workers, 1,000 of them Chinese, and 1,600 engineers, half from China.

“In the second half of 2021, we will start delivering the 20 buildings one by one. By 2022, we will deliver the whole project with a completed construction area of about 1,900,000 square meters,” said Chang.

Egyptian President Abdel Fattah el-Sisi unveiled plans for a new capital built from scratch in the desert 45km east of Cairo in March 2015.

Project Timeline


Design for the Iconic Tower officially started in 2007. The building comprised a unique design that sees it twist from a triangular base into a rectangular skyscraper. It is founded on an area of roughly 240,000 square meters.

May 2018

The construction of the Iconic Tower was officially launched in May 2018. The construction of the project was launched by the country’s Prime Minister Mostafa Madbouly. The Iconic Tower is going up at a rate of one floor every six days or fewer with five thousand workers toiling on the project.

February 2019

In February 2019, a base of about 18,500 cubic concrete and 5000 tons of reinforced bars was poured.

December 2020

As of December 2020, 49 floors out of 80 (245 metres (804 ft) were reported to have already been completed.


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