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Awards >> Special Award for Infrastructure Project (2017 - 2018)

Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmed Al Sabah Causeway

Special projects are outstanding not only from conventional engineering and economy points of view, but also for their contribution towards the development of society.

The Special Award for Infrastructure Project 2017 was presented to Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmed Al Sabah Causeway, which was honoured as “monumental infrastructure development that will became Kuwait’s national symbol of progress and link to its future”.

Project Objectives

The central and southern regions of Kuwait are densely populated and current strategic planning focuses on developing the northern regions, and on facilitating their integration with the rest of the country. Sheikh Jaber Al Ahmed Al Sabah Causeway provides the strategic link between Kuwait City and the Subiyah Area.

It reduces travel distance between Shuwaikh and Subiyah from 104 km to 36 km, and driving time from 90 minutes to less than 30 minutes. This causeway is one of the largest and most prestigious transport infrastructure endeavors in Kuwait and the region. Starting at the intersection of Ghazali Road with Jamal Abdul Nasser Street, it crosses Kuwait Bay in the northernly direction and ends at Subiyah.

The causeway accommodates a highway comprising three traffic lanes and an emergency shoulder on each side of the route. Design speed is 120 kilometers/hour, and a larger part of the link is a low level causeway with closely spaced piers. A 120m wide navigational channel with a 23 meters clearance allows access for ships to the bay.

This is achieved by an innovative structural system, where stay cables supporting the bridge across the navigational channel, are anchored to a truss-pylon shaped like a sail boat.

Structural Features

The 153 meters high pylon is a composite concretesteel truss structure. It is supported on large piles, some of which are 3 meters in diameters and 60 meters in height. The span across the navigational channel is supported by eight pairs of stay cables, the longest being 248 m long with a diameter of 250 mm.

There are a number of full span girders, ranging from 40-60 m in length and 1000-1800 tonnes in mass. Segments were fabricated in a precasting yard in Subiyah, transported 2.5 km on land, and then shipped to location on a barge


The concrete mix and its production was very critical for this project. The bridge was designed to operate for 100 years with minimal maintenance; and the concrete has to survive harsh Arabian Gulf conditions, where the water has the largest concentration of salts in an open body of water in the world.

More than one million cubic meters of various grades of concrete were produced. A special cementitious material, slag in this case, was used to replace part of the cement in the concrete mixes.

Ingredients and water to cement ratios were carefully selected to achieve durability. Molluscs can work slowly and persistently on deteriorating the concrete and hence calcium-based aggregates were avoided.

Environment Considerations

Two artificial islands have been developed along the link. Each island is about 300,000 m˛ in area, and will house numerous facilities including administration buildings, electrical substations, traffic control center and potentially some recreational amenities.

The bay is Kuwait’s window to life and the world, and it has to be protected. The environmental impact of offshore construction is usually a major concern because of detrimental effects on sea life and on pollution of water.

Construction in this project was designed not only to protect life, but studies under the auspices of Environmental Public Authority were conducted to develop coral reef areas and shrimps and sea vegetation habitats.

The causeway project is an exceptional example of sustainable development.

Technical data

Pylon :

153 meters high / Composite concrete-steel truss structure.

Stay Cables :

Longest is 248 meters and 250 mm in diameter.

Precast Segments :

60 meters segments weighed 1800 tonnes; 40 metres weighed 1000 tonnes.

Batching Plants :

4 land and 3 marine plants to produce concrete.

Piles :

Over 1550 piles. Some up to 3.0 m in diameter and 60.m in height.

Pile Caps :

Over 1200.

The Award was presented to:
  • Developer
  • Public Authority for Roads and Land Transport (PARLT).
Certificates and plaques were presented to:
  • General Contractor
  • Hyundai Engineering and Construction.
    The Combined Group Contracting Company.

  • Design and Supervision Consultants
  • Systra International Design Consultants(Design), France.
    Dar Al-Handasah - Shair and Partners(Design and Supervision), Kuwait.
    SSH International(Design and Supervision), Kuwait.

  • Main Concrete Supplier
  • National Industries Company.

ACI - Kuwait Chapter Award of Excellence
ACI - Kuwait Chapter Special Award for Infrastructure Project
ACI - Kuwait Chapter Special Recognition Award

ACI Kuwait Chapter