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Dubai World group's Limitless: Testing the limits of green development

It has been a whirlwind few years for Limitless, a division of the sprawling Dubai World group. Founded in July 2005 with the express aim of designing and developing the best environmentally sustainable buildings and cities, the agency has already scored some big successes. Elliot Wilson reports.

Limitless ambition: a snapshot of other developments

Limitless’s latest project is one of its most ambitious. Announced in mid-February, it involved the company entering Jordan’s growing market for the first time. The $300 million project, called Limitless Towers, comprises twin structures that will eventually soar 200 metres above the capital city of Amman. It will include the world’s highest suspended swimming pool – a glass-bottomed structure linking the two towers 125 metres above ground level, providing swimmers with a vertiginal view of the city below. The towers will begin construction in October 2008 and will be fully operational three years later.

Yet it’s the sustainable metrics of the new project that most excite global city planners. Limitless Towers will be the first green building to be constructed in Jordan, adopting energy saving and water recycling systems that ensure it receives Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (Leed) accreditation. The Leed rating system was established by the US Green Building Council in 1998, and now covers 14,000 projects in 30 countries. A new agency rating, Leed-NC 3.0, is expected to be adopted soon, which will demand a significant reduction in greenhouse gases below a set level.

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