the world's most visited architecture website

Sign up now and start saving and organizing your favorite architecture projects and photos

Sign up now to save and organize your favorite architecture projects


Find the most inspiring products for your projects in our Product Catalog.

Find the most inspiring products in our Product Catalog.


Get the ArchDaily Chrome Extension and be inspired with every new tab. Install here »


All over the world, architects are finding cool ways to re-use run-down old buildings. Click here to see the best in Refurbishment Architecture.

Want to see the coolest refurbishment projects? Click here.


Immerse yourself in inspiring buildings with our selection of 360 videos. Click here.

See our immersive, inspiring 360 videos. Click here.

Navigate articles using your keyboard
  1. ArchDaily
  2. Articles
  3. Dubai International Financial Center / ACDF Architects

Dubai International Financial Center / ACDF Architects

Dubai International Financial Center / ACDF Architects

Canadian-based ACDF Architects have designed an International Financial Center for Dubai (DIFC). The DIFC draws inspiration from geographical and geological properties to create a structure that becomes a natural extension of the site. ACDF Architects work to link the architecture with the region to “give the impression that the building takes root from these natural components instead of simply being an imposing object on the DIFC properties.”

More about the project after the break.

The complex consists of two towers which are connected by an elevated horizontal platform.  The main tower emerges from the ground while the second tower rests atop the platform.  The underside of the platform provides circulation space so the site is accessible from all sides, and the upper surface offers a continuation of the main street that incorporates a green environment and cafes and restaurants.  Light is diffused to the underside through perforated angled pre-cast concrete panels and a reflective pool.   With this connection, ACDF Architects have created a complex that not only consists of the two towers, but also the space in between.

The facade of the main tower is clad in a triangulated reflective skin that provides texture to the structure while emphasizing the structure’s sculptural nature.  The triangulated pattern, which is inspired by Islamic geometry, is comprised of three glass panels that have different properties.  The top panels, shaded by serigraph, reduce solar glare and minimize heat gain, the side photovoltaic panels absorb solar energy to provide power for most of the public zones, while the bottom clear glazed panels provide views.  The skin of the smaller tower lays flat to provide a strong contrast that creates a “seductive dialogue between a polish and textured triangulated glazed facade”.

The torsion of the main tower creates pockets in the structure for varying programs.  These specific spaces reveal the “sculptural qualities to the viewer, becoming moments in the building that express materiality, color, light, and mystery,” explained the architects.

We also recently featured ACDF Architects for their Aqueducts and Sewer Project.

Design Architect: ACDF* architectes-urbanisme-intérieur

Architects and Engineer:       ACDF* architects – msdl – ibrdli

Design Team:                       Maxime Frappier, Benoit Dupuis, Joan Renaud, Patrick Morand, Yien Chao, Mathieu Cadoret, Fahed Hammami, Yves Dagenais, André Dupras, Patrick Bourget, Essam Ibrahim

Location:                              Dubai – UAE

Client:                                  Dubai International Financial Centre

Area:                                    Tower A: 78 780m2, Tower B: 28 025m2

Project Year: 2008-2009

About this author
Karen Cilento

See more:

Cite: Karen Cilento. "Dubai International Financial Center / ACDF Architects" 22 Jun 2009. ArchDaily. Accessed . <> ISSN 0719-8884
Read comments