There is a wealth of large construction projects popping up all over the world every single day, and with advances in state-of-the-art technologies, some are very impressive. Projects can take years and years to plan due to the complex design, scarcity of materials and sheer magnitude of the task in-hand but are certainly well worth the resource. Often, the large-scale of these developments means that they are likely to lead to economic prosperity, be it from trade, tourism or dominance within a specific industry. From towering sky-scrapers to structures that are, quite literally, out of this world. We thought we’d take a look at some of the largest construction projects that are happening globally in 2019.

Al Maktoum International Airport, Dubai

Extending over more than 21 square miles, designed to handle 200 wide-body aircraft at a time and a passenger capacity of over 26 million a year, Al Maktoum is in a league of its own when it comes to international airports. Although the latest expansion date has been delayed, the Dubai Aviation Engineering Projects is the autonomous entity responsible for the airport expansion and aims to handle over 220 million passengers each year. The expansion includes the construction of six train lines and seven stations to connect the concourse and terminals. The project utilises technologies such as biometrics and smart passenger tracking throughout the expansion, facilitating a seamless passenger journey through terminals. The second phase of this development alone has an estimated cost of $32 billion but has been delayed with no definite completion date available.

Airplanes land in Dubai

The International Space Station, Space

One of the few construction projects that can be considered as multi-national, The International Space Station is the largest single structure that humans have ever put into space. It was completed between 1998 and 2011 but continues to evolve with new missions and experiments as part of an on-going project to further our understanding of outer space. By January 2018, the Space Station had hosted 230 individuals from 18 separate countries, a number that continues to grow as technologies develop to become more and more accommodating. It circles the earth every 92 minutes, and costs thus far more than $60 billion. The project is scheduled to operate until at least 2024, with plans to extend until 2028, after which the fate of the Space Station remains unknown, although it is likely to be deorbited or recycled for future space exploration.

Dubailand, Dubai

Even theme park giant Walt Disney World can fit three times inside this spectacular complex in Dubai, the size of which is difficult to fathom without seeing it for yourself. Covering 278 square kilometres, the $64 billion complex will boast theme parks, eco-tourism, health facilities, sports venues, science attractions and hotels, the latter of which includes the world’s largest hotel with 6,500 rooms. Development of this construction was severely impeded by global Recession and the financial crisis in Dubai, which halted all development in 2008, but after resuming five years later, the venture is scheduled for completion in 2025. Encompassing 45 so-called ‘mega-projects’ and over 200 sub projects, this development is one of the largest in recent construction history and is likely to change the tourism culture in Dubai forever.

City of Dubai

The Great Man-Made River, Libya

Libya has been working on the “Great Man-Made River” (GMR) project since 1985. It is the largest irrigation project in the world. Severe drought has long-since put strain on the country’s water supply, but after the vast quantities of fresh underground water was discovered during oil explorations in the 50s and 60s, Libya embarked upon filling that gap with what is one of the largest civil engineering projects in the world. When completed, it will irrigate more than 350,000 acres of arable land and will substantially increase available drinking water in most of Libya’s urban centres. The water source for the project is the underground Nubian Sandstone Aquifer System. The project is scheduled for completion in 2030.

The London Crossrail Project, London

What was once the world’s first underground train system continues to make history with its plans for extension, adding approximately 26 miles of tunnel that will provide connections for 40 stations. With an eye-watering cost of construction estimated at $23 billion, the project will be completed in phases to minimise effects on the current operation. The installation in stations and tunnels is expected to be completed by the end of the year, whilst extensive tests will operate throughout 2020 to ensure 100% confidence before the new Elizabeth line will be open to the public. The central station of the Elizabeth line will open between Paddington and Abbeywood, featuring links to the West End, London City, Canary Wharf and southeast London at a proposed frequency of 12 trains an hour. This will provide further transport links for those that live and work in these London hotspots, relieving some of the strain on existing commuter trails.

The Tube

That concludes our pick of just five of the many large construction projects that are happening right now and what you can expect from each. All of these are spectacular and impressive, but you may have a construction project of your own that you deem to be just as important! If you’re looking for a structural engineer in Devon or Cornwall, contact the friendly team here at Martin Perry, we are more than happy to discuss your wants, needs and desires. Rest-assured, we guarantee shorter competition dates than those mentioned above!