QR4.2bn Qatar National Convention Centre opens today
Sunday, 04 December 2011 04:03
A view of the Qatar National Convention Centre, which opens today.
by Francesca Astorri
DOHA: The Qatar National Convention Centre (QNCC) opens its doors today putting Doha on the world map as an international destination for conferences and events in the future.
“The construction of the QNCC offers a place where the world’s best minds can come together” said Ali Nasser M N Al Khalifa, Chief Executive Officer ASTAD Project Management.
Mohamad Bahig, QNCC Sales Manager, told The Peninsula that the Center cost QR4.2bn without considering the cost of furniture.
The 40,000sqm convention centre designed by the Japanese architect Arata Isozaki was conceived as a world-class venue to host world’s best thought-provoking research and knowledge-based conferences and exhibitions. Saad Al Muhannadi, VP Capital Projects and Facilities Management for Qatar Foundation, said that it took five years to complete the Center that now offers fully flexible space options with conference halls and meeting rooms that can host from 10 to 10,000 people. The energy consumption of the centre is supported by 3,500 square metres of solar panels that provide 12.5 percent of QNCC’s energy needs.
The Center is already the new home of the work of art “Maman” by Louise Bourgeois, a nine-metre sculpture of a spider that has fascinated the whole world being exhibited in all the main contemporary art museums. The QNCC is also immediately showing its full potentials by hosting the 20th World Petroleum Congress opening today and by putting on stage on December 16 the William Shakespeare’s play Richard III, starring Kevin Spacey and directed by Sam Mendes.
As Qatar is turning from an oil & gas based economy to a knowledge based one, a place like the QNCC was more than needed to develop the country’s potential. Mohamad Bahig, QNCC Sales Manager, told The Peninsula that the Center cost QR4.2bn without considering the cost of the internal furniture, but QNCC was not built with the prospective of revenue. The focus in fact is not on the return of investments but on the return of development.
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