Cladding of the burned Tamweel Tower to be replacedTenants asked to contact Rera in case of rental disputes with ownersResidents wait outside of Tamweel Tower in JLT to enter the building.Image Credit: Pankaj Sharma/Gulf NewsApartment owners of Tamweel Tower in JLT coming out after attending a close door meeting at Almas Tower, JLT.Image Credit: Pankaj Sharma/Gulf News‹› Published: 00:00 November 26, 2012 01 By Janice Ponce De Leon, Staff Reporter SMALLMEDIUMLARGEDubai: The exterior cladding panels currently installed in the Tamweel Tower that was partially gutted by fire last week will “most likely” be replaced with fire-proof cladding panels, Gulf News has learnt.Tamweel, the building developer, held a private meeting with the apartment owners of the 34-storey mixed-use tower on Sunday. More than a hundred owners were present at the meeting while members of the media were not allowed inside.Citing a Gulf News report on Sunday, one owner with an engineering background told the board and owners present that highly flammable exterior cladding panels on medium- and high rise towers were now banned under a new national fire safety code.“Tamweel confirmed that after forensic report and insurance claims have been done, it will most likely replace all the cladding materials with fire-proof ones,” a member of the board told Gulf News on condition of anonymity.“As the way forward, the insurance company, IOA and Tamweel shall appoint an expert to assess the damage and get core samples from the structure to test if the fire has affected the reinforcement of the building,” he added.It was not immediately clear when the building repairs — which could take at least eight months to one year — will begin.The owners were told that the current insurance policy of the tower, amounting to Dh340 million, covers all damaged common areas and apartment structure only. This amount of money can reportedly cover the demolition and rebuilding of the tower, should that be an option later on.During the meeting, new members of the Interim Board of Owners Association (IOA) were elected to coordinate with relevant authorities the way forward in the rehabilitation and reinstatement of the building. The IOA is composed of 10 members, with seven permanent members and three reserved members. Tamweel currently holds two seats on the board.Related Links Support grows for JLT fire victimsBuildings or death traps?Flammable high-rise panels banned The IOA, however, is not yet officially recognised by Dubai’s Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA). Hence it does not have any legal capacity to decide on the interest of the owners and residents nor sign contracts with anyone regarding building repair or other concerns as of yet.Meanwhile, owners welcomed Tamweel officials’ decision to freeze monthly mortgage installments of over 60 units financed by Tamweel and Dubai Islamic Bank (DIB) in the tower until after the building is reinstated.A Tamweel spokesperson said: “In order to support the owners in this ordeal, we have taken a decision to defer the monthly instalments for our affected customers. For as long as they are without possession of their unit, Tamweel and DIB will not collect home finance instalments.”The IOA has suggested to the owners to return tenants’ cheques and terminate their contracts so they can look for new accommodation while the building is being repaired.“They suggested to the owners that it is lawful to return the cheques, but it is up to the landlord. Otherwise, tenants can take it up with the dispute committee at RERA,” Irfan, who was representing an owner, said.Bassem Fakhry, a tenant, expressed concerns that his last cheque amounting to Dh47,000 is dated November 30. He has asked his landlord not to cash it but has not received a response yet.Many of the residents were dismayed with the fact that no one from Rera or Dubai Multi Commodities Centre, the area developer of Jumeirah Lakes Towers, was present in the meeting.More Pictures Video PlayExpand Share your viewsName*This field is required.Phone*This field is required.Enter a valid phone number.Country*AfghanistanAlbaniaAlgeriaAmerican SamoaAndorraAngolaAnguillaAntarcticaAntigua And BarbudaArgentinaArmeniaArubaAustraliaAustriaAzerbaijanBahamasBahrainBangladeshBarbadosBelarusBelgiumBelizeBeninBermudaBhutanBoliviaBosnia And HerzegowinaBotswanaBouvet IslandBrazilBritish Indian Ocean TerritoryBrunei DarussalamBulgariaBurkina FasoBurundiCambodiaCameroonCanadaCape VerdeCayman IslandsCentral African RepublicChadChileChinaChristmas IslandCocos (Keeling) IslandsColombiaComorosCongoCongo, The Democratic Republic Of TheCook IslandsCosta RicaCote D'IvoireCroatia (Local Name: Hrvatska)CubaCyprusCzech RepublicDenmarkDjiboutiDominicaDominican RepublicEast TimorEcuadorEgyptEl SalvadorEquatorial GuineaEritreaEstoniaEthiopiaFalkland Islands (Malvinas)Faroe IslandsFijiFinlandFranceFrance, MetropolitanFrench GuianaFrench PolynesiaFrench Southern TerritoriesGabonGambiaGeorgiaGermanyGhanaGibraltarGreeceGreenlandGrenadaGuadeloupeGuamGuatemalaGuineaGuinea-BissauGuyanaHaitiHeard And Mc Donald IslandsHoly See (Vatican City State)HondurasHong KongHungaryIcelandIndiaIndonesiaIran (Islamic Republic Of)IraqIrelandItalyJamaicaJapanJordanKazakhstanKenyaKiribatiKorea, Democratic People'S Republic OfKorea, Republic OfKuwaitKyrgyzstanLao People'S Democratic RepublicLatviaLebanonLesothoLiberiaLibyan Arab JamahiriyaLiechtensteinLithuaniaLuxembourgMacauMacedonia, The Former Yugoslav Republic OfMadagascarMalawiMalaysiaMaldivesMaliMaltaMarshall IslandsMartiniqueMauritaniaMauritiusMayotteMexicoMicronesia, Federated States OfMoldova, Republic OfMonacoMongoliaMontserratMoroccoMozambiqueMyanmarNamibiaNauruNepalNetherlandsNetherlands AntillesNew CaledoniaNew ZealandNicaraguaNigerNigeriaNiueNorfolk IslandNorthern Mariana IslandsNorwayOmanPakistanPalauPalestinian Territory, OccupiedPanamaPapua New GuineaParaguayPeruPhilippinesPitcairnPolandPortugalPuerto RicoQatarReunionRomaniaRussian FederationRwandaSaint Kitts And NevisSaint LuciaSaint Vincent And The GrenadinesSamoaSan MarinoSao Tome And PrincipeSaudi ArabiaSenegalSeychellesSierra LeoneSingaporeSlovakia (Slovak Republic)SloveniaSolomon IslandsSomaliaSouth AfricaSouth Georgia And The South Sandwich IslandsSpainSri LankaSt. HelenaSt. Pierre And MiquelonSudanSurinameSvalbard And Jan Mayen IslandsSwazilandSwedenSwitzerlandSyrian Arab RepublicTaiwan, Province Of ChinaTajikistanTanzania, United Republic OfThailandTogoTokelauTongaTrinidad And TobagoTunisiaTurkeyTurkmenistanTurks And Caicos IslandsTuvaluUgandaUkraineUnited Arab EmiratesUnited KingdomUnited StatesUnited States Minor Outlying IslandsUruguayUzbekistanVanuatuVenezuelaVietnamVirgin Islands (British)Virgin Islands (U.S.)Wallis And Futuna IslandsWestern SaharaYemenYugoslaviaZambiaZimbabweCity*This field is required.Email*Enter a valid email ID.Comment* This field is required.Please login first to post a comment.I acknowledged and accepted gulfnews.com user terms and conditions*This field is required.1 CommentShowNewest FirstOldest FirstMost RatedLowest RatedMahesh ButaniNov 26, 2012 4:50This issue was highlighted over a year ago when a fire engulfed abuilding at Sharjah. It is clear now that these claddings - non firerated aluminium composite/sandwich panels - can be the cause of a majorcatastrophe. As this is purely a decorative feature, the correct riskmanagement strategy now would be to identify the buildings with non firerated cladding - of all types - and immediately remove them until areplacement strategy can be conceived by the stakeholders. In myopinion, this can be done fairly quickly, and will only temporarilyblemish the appearance of a structure. In fact, it is time to identifyother areas in a building require fire rated materials, and inspectthese too with a view to replacement with safer materials.Mahesh Butani Nov 26, 2012 4:50This issue was highlighted over a year ago when a fire engulfed abuilding at Sharjah. It is clear now that these claddings - non firerated aluminium composite/sandwich panels - can be the cause of a majorcatastrophe. As this is purely a decorative feature, the correct riskmanagement strategy now would be to identify the buildings with non firerated cladding - of all types - and immediately remove them until areplacement strategy can be conceived by the stakeholders. In myopinion, this can be done fairly quickly, and will only temporarilyblemish the appearance of a structure. In fact, it is time to identifyother areas in a building require fire rated materials, and inspectthese too with a view to replacement with safer materials.