Hartlepool's Tata Steel helps create iconic roof of Abu Dhabi art gallery

The Louvre Abu Dhabi.
The Louvre Abu Dhabi.

Workers in Hartlepool have helped created the iconic steel roof of Abu Dhabi's new Louvre gallery.

The plant has supplied almost 2,000 tonnes of premium steel to build the vast engineered roof suspended above the new gallery.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi.

The crucial contribution to the construction of one of the world’s most impressive new architectural endeavours required 1,900 tonnes of square hollow sections being rolled and delivered for the project, working with Alukönigstahl in Austria.

In addition to housing hundreds of precious artworks, the newly-built £1 billion museum in Abu Dhabi is its own work of art. It features a latticed dome designed to protect visitors from the heat, while allowing the 55 rooms and galleries it covers to experience natural light.

Sixty-three supersized elements, made from steel profiles, support the canopy – the size of five football pitches.

the new art gallery was named one of BBC Culture’s best buildings of 2017.

Andy Pottinger, associate director, Buro Happold, the design engineers who specified the premium Tata Steel product, said: “We’re really pleased that a top-quality product has enabled us to realise our vision of the Louvre dome.”

Andrew Ward, works manager at Tata Steel said: “The team at Hartlepool is very proud to have produced steel that has helped to construct what is definitely one of the world’s standout new buildings.

“We worked very closely with Buro Happold to ensure the stringent technical requirements were understood. Our technical capability to manufacture steel hollow sections is well proven, and I am confident this was a key consideration in the tender evaluation. Tata Steel has a global track record of managing complex project packages.

“Tata Steel has executed projects of this nature in the past with extreme precision and accuracy, ensuring achievement of project objectives and client goals.”

The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the first universal museum in the Arab world, born out of an inter-governmental agreement signed between the United Arab Emirates and France.

The museum presents both ancient and contemporary works of historic, cultural, and sociological interest from around the world.

It comes after the futures of hundreds of workers were secured late last year when part of the Tata Steel operation was taken over.

Liberty Steel acquired the 42-inch and 84-inch steel mills that manufacture pipeline for the international oil and gas industry from Tata Steel in the summer.

Tata Steel still own a 20-inch tube mill in Hartlepool site, where 270 people work.