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Abu Dhabi, UAEFriday 21 September 2018

Unsafe tower block evacuated in Abu Dhabi 

Residents given alternate accommodation while the building is demolished 

A building in Al Zahiyah is demolished after residents reported feeling 'strange vibrations'. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality 
A building in Al Zahiyah is demolished after residents reported feeling 'strange vibrations'. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality 

Municipality chiefs have evacuated an unsafe tower block in Abu Dhabi and residents have been given alternative temporary accommodation.

The 13-storey building in the Al Zahiyah area is now being demolished, Abu Dhabi Municipality said on Monday.

It is unclear when the residents left but it is believed Emirates Red Crescent helped them find accommodation.

Residents had previously reported “strange vibrations” and tremors in the building located in what formerly was known as Tourist Club area.

A municipality inspection then revealed cracks in the building's core structures, such as the pillars supporting the building and in the walls and stairs.

“The building has been deemed unfit for occupation, falls short of Abu Dhabi building codes and provides no safety for residents,” the municipality said.

Cracks are discovered in the core structures of the building before it was demolished. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality 
Cracks are discovered in the core structures of the building before it was demolished. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality 

Before the demolition process started, the building was first reinforced with steel and concrete to prevent a sudden collapse.

This also enabled residents to retrieve their possessions safely.

“The entry of residents into the building was made under the supervision of the police to avoid tampering with the property of residents by strangers,” the municipality said.

Adnoc also provided assistance in removing gas cylinders from the apartments. A temporary boundary wall was built around the building and the site sealed off.

The demolition of the tower block comes as municipality chiefs target property owners who do not maintain their buildings.

Owners have been given until the end of the year to comply with tough rules on "preventive maintenance" of their buildings such as work to the external appearance, improving safety and adhering to regulations on hygiene.

The building in Al Zahiyah is reinforced with steel and concrete to prevent a sudden collapse. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality
The building in Al Zahiyah is reinforced with steel and concrete to prevent a sudden collapse. Courtesy Abu Dhabi Municipality

If they fail to register in the municipality’s preventive maintenance system, property owners may not be able to secure an occupancy certificate and, in turn, register new tenancy contracts.

Occupancy certificates are mandatory for property owners.

Last month, the municipality demolished 220 rundown units while over the past three years, 376 buildings have been served with offence notices.

The municipality, meanwhile, thanked everyone who helped with the demolition process and relocation of residents.

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Read more:

Maintain buildings or face penalties, property owners told

How Mussaffah is undergoing a quiet transformation

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