Dubai’s newest mega-attraction, a 150-meter-high, 93-meter-wide picture frame structure dubbed the “Dubai Frame” is approaching completion after a nearly two-year delay, and is set for opening in the second half of this year. At a cost of $43.60 million, the new building will stand as a symbol of the city’s rapid rise from modest settlement to gleaming metropolis, giving visitors a panoramic view of the boundary-pushing skyscrapers from the coast of the Persian Gulf.
It also may stand as a symbol of something far less idyllic: intellectual property theft.
A new architectural icon in Dubai on the verge of completion. Dubai Frame in the form of a huge frame for a beautiful features. pic.twitter.com/qqRiOoFEtW— بلدية دبي (@DMunicipality) December 28, 2016
As reported by the New York Times, Mexican architect Fernando Donis is now suing the Dubai municipality for breach of copyright and for theft of his design for the structure. In 2009, Donis was selected as the winner of an international competition for the landmark organized by Elevator manufacturer ThyssenKrupp, beating out more than 900 other entrants. But following his victory, he was shut out of the project’s execution and construction, and never receiving compensation for his intellectual property.
In response, the Dubai government has disregarded his complaints, claiming that Donis lacked the necessary local licenses required to complete the project, and noting the $100,000 prize the architect received for winning the competition as proper compensation.
This event is not the first time Dubai has been in hot water for its design and construction practices; in the past, the city has faced scrutiny for its treatment of migrant workers and erratic construction timelines.
Read the full story about the dispute here.
News via the New York Times.