I have been to several construction projects in Dubai and Abu Dhabi, but these are by far my most favorite (and I am most proud of). With more than 14 years in the construction industry, people may think that I have enough knowledge.
Contrary to their beliefs, I myself sometimes wonder why I feel like it was only yesterday that I started out in my profession. With numerous engineering discoveries and new technologies, no engineers can ever truly say that they know and understand the entirety of the construction industry.
The people, the consultants, clients, and contractors in themselves are not constant even my work and my job are not constant. But these people, projects, and job positions have helped me attain the experience and knowledge that no money in the world could have bought.
Quality engineering is a living profession that continually evolves as people and the world evolve. It is comparable to the word “change.” It is not stagnant. It is not constant.
These projects I’m about to share with you are where I’ve learned all my knowledge about quality engineering, quality assurance, and quality control job. It is has been a fantastic opportunity to work with all of these companies because there have always been other great people working with them and their knowledge and experience is something that will eventually get passed on to you and is something to learn from.
With my humble start and continually progressing experience, here are some of the projects in Dubai that I have worked with.
1. Marina Mansions Tower at Marina
Marina Mansions started its construction in 2004 and was completed in 2007 (approx.). The mansion is a high-rise building and has 30 floors with a total height of 136 meters. As the name suggest, the project is residential in nature.
The project developer was Al Sondos Property Developers LLC and the project consultant was WS Atkins and Partners. It has a total of 100 two-bed residential apartment, a total of 97 maid’s rooms, and four 4-bed plus maid’s room penthouses. Being premium quality, aesthetically, each residential apartment is made up of granite and marble flooring, with Italian ceramic tiles for each terrace and western fixtures.
In this project, I learned how we check and inspect the work on site. How we inspect the finishing especially curtain walls up to the testing. Working with WS Atkins consultant was remarkable because I was working with smart people. And the result their knowledge will pass on to you.
If you ever get a chance to work with WS Atkins, you feel truly thankful for the experience because honestly, you will learn a lot from them.
2. The Square at Al Mamzar
The square at Al Mamzar is an arabesque-themed residential community located in Dubai where nine 7-Storey residential buildings enclose the 6,000 square meters of modern water features and flourishing garden. One of the buildings is a hotel, a well-known hotel in Dubai. The square has one huge swimming pool in between the nine buildings with a separate children’s pool. To cater for common basement parking, the building used post tension slab. The consultant was Arkiplan. The whole project had a contract price of 400 million dirhams.
This project was the time my career was starting to take off, I was able to absorb everything about quality assurance and quality control tasks, this was my breakthrough. I learned how to answer and close Nonconformance Reports or NCRs. I learned how to close Site Instructions, how to make a monthly report, how to check all works on site, how to check concrete delivered to the site and all related subtasks. I also learned how control drawings. I learned how to prepare a method statement with the assistance of my boss. (Hi! Boss if you are reading right now, I would like to say Thank You.)
All of that is the reason How a Quality Assurance and Quality Control Engineer in Dubai Could Double His Job Offer.
3. ARKAN Cement Manufacturing Plant
ARKAN Cement Manufacturing Plant is a leading cement manufacturer in the United Arab Emirates. The factory is located in Al Ain Truck Road was built by us. The consultant was Jacobs. Being one of the promising players in the Abu Dhabi government, ARKAN strives to play a key role in a UAE diversification drive to deliver the government’s 2030 vision. The head office is located on the 17th floor, Prestige Tower, Mohammed Bin Zayed City, UAE.
This project is also where I met and worked with a super smart consultant he was working with Jacobs International. On this job I continued to prepare Method Statement and Inspection and Test Plan. I gained an in-depth knowledge about developing project documents. This project is also where I learned how to conduct an audit.
4. Khalifa Port Warehouses
Khalifa Port Warehouses is Abu Dhabi state-of-the-art container handler, as it has a semi-automated container terminal. This offshore port is located on a port island extending 2.7 square kilometers. The constructed warehouse is made up of reinforced moment resisting concrete frames. The project warehouse is a pre-engineered steel structure building, restings on pile-driven centric beams, floors, and other reinforced members are cast on site. The project management consultant was Bechtel and the third-party inspector was Bureau Veritas.
This project is where I learned a lot about project documents. I learned how to make Inspection and Test Plans a Checklist and Risk Assessment & Job Safety and Environmental Analysis.
5. ADCAN Pharma Factory
The ADCAN Pharma Project was built in ICADD, Mussaffa, Abu Dhabi. It was built of isolated concrete foundations with tie beams at the periphery of the building. It was erected near the seashore but the water table was lying below the footing level but still, we applied waterproofing on the blinding to resist any future rise of the sea water that can affect the integrity of the building due to the penetration of water into the concrete.
On this project, as a lead auditor, I enhanced my ability to conduct an internal audit by using ISO 9001:2015 QMS Standards. The project manager, surveyor, and document controller had been audited and so were other project staff as well. I’ve conducted the internal audit due to the external audit that would be taking place. I was able to prepare a project quality plan for this project and that project quality plan was also used in other projects and got approval at the first time of submission, maybe it is because of its uniqueness.
6. AMMROC Project at Al Ain Airport
The Advanced Military Maintenance Repair Overhaul Center (AMMROC) is one of the leading service providers for military repair and overhaul. It was launched in the year 2010, and AMMROC is true to its commitment to contribute and support the economic diversification of UAE by supporting its armed services, AMMROC’s key clients are the General Headquarter of the United Arab Emirates.
The project I had with them consisted of five big hangars, as well as office buildings and workshops. This was also the biggest project I’ve ever worked on, with billions of dirhams comprising the total contract price. The buildings are pre-engineered structure and concrete structures. We connected the hangars to the runway of the Al Ain Airport by constructing the taxiway (one side of the 5-kilometer stretch road) at approximately 24” concrete thickness. The project management consultant was AECOM and the Supervision was WSP, and ECG was the third-party inspector.
This project is where I greatly developed my expertise. We built this project from underground to the roof, and I’ve met some super smart people through working with the PMC and Consultant. Some of them were from western countries.
7. First Gulf Bank, Al Jaddaf
First Gulf Bank is the largest bank in Dubai, United Arab Emirate and is also one of the world’s biggest financial institutions. The First Gulf Bank is 20-story twin tower, with a common two-basement parking. The twin towers have four swimming pools located on their respective rooftops. This project is located in Al Jaddaf Dubai. The property management consultant was Arcadis and the consultant was the National Engineering Bureau or NEB.
These are some of the projects I have worked on. Due to the nature of my work as a civil engineer working with numerous people, I may not be able to get the whole picture and my perspective of these projects may be limited. Some points stated herein may be subjected to change and verification.
Quality Engineer Tips:
1. Find people that you can learn from. Stay with those people who will share their knowledge, ideas, and wisdom and eventually it will pass on to you. This way how you’ll learn quickly.
2. Read your specification and international standards as well (very important). Remember reading is a skill. Here are good books and standards that you can learn from.
• Design and Control of Concrete Mixtures
• 7 International Standards for Concrete
• Project Quality Plan
• Method Statement
• Quality Control Procedure
• Construction Project Templates
• ISO 9001:2015 Quality Management System
Yes, I may be ahead of my colleagues financially, and in terms of experience, and competence. But I owe this to all professional who once were my workmates, my bosses, my consultants, my subsidiaries, and juniors, all of whom molded me through the years. Wherever life may lead me as years continue to pass by, I will always be in awe and thankful to the Supreme Being that He has led me to where I am right now.