Political troubles not withstanding Iraq should be a rich country, and one with the trappings of its neighbours which includes supertall buildings. Bearing this in mind the forward looking Provincial Council of Basra has hired Mott MacDonald to come up with a feasibility study for a city district that includes a 240 floor building that would be the tallest building in the world.
Designed by Anglo-Iraqi firm, AMBS Architects, it would be 1,152 metres tall although the official structural height of the building will be 964 with the following 188 metres consisting of a spire so by some measures it may be slightly shorter than the Kingdom Tower.
The plan is part of a new masterplan being created to rebuild the central business district of the city with the city's local government clearly subscribing to the view of "build and they will come".
The half a million square metre project has been dubbed "The Bride" thanks to a massive canopy that flows off the side of the towers and flairs out from the base of the tower and covers several square kilometres of space around it providing shelter from the sun for an entire neighbourhood and temperatures which in the summer can reach 50c in the heat of the summer. At the same time the huge roof area offers the chance to construct a solar farm that will help power the development.
Technically speaking the skyscraper itself will actually be four towers set around an inner circle, each of which rises to the next one. Connecting them together will be what are called squares, disk-like structures that bridge the gap between the towers.
Although it sounds difficult to imagine Iraq building such a tower few would have imagined Dubai experiencing the boom it has only a couple of decades ago. This area of the country is now peaceful and the Basra Governate is becoming increasingly flush with oil revenues, that in theory at least, should give it the resources to match the blingiest of cities in the Middle East.