Palm Jebel Ali – phase 1, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Soil improvement works for the palm-shaped artificial Island.

Amélioration de sol / vibroflotation/ vibro compaction / colonne ballastée/ vibro compactage/ stone columns

The Palm Jebel Ali’ is the second in the series of three “palm trees” that form an archipelago of artificial islands reclaimed from the sea in Dubai and set out in the shape of a palm tree.


Dubai, UAE




China Railway Engineering Me

General contractor

Soil improvement contractor: APCC - VFL joint venture

This Palm is intended to house residential and tourist complexes, shopping and leisure centres, for a population of approximately 250,000 people. The Vibroflotation Group Ltd, a former Soletanche Bachy subsidiary, as part of a joint venture with APCC, was awarded the design and build contract for ground improvement works.

The site covers 10km2 of land to be treated, spread over a total area measuring 50km2, where most access to the worksites is by sea.

This non-standard site mobilized more than 400 people with up to 20 cranes and a series of 36 compaction units (V48 for compacting and V23 for the stone columns).

After backfilling an area contained by rock armour to a thickness of approximately 15m, vibroflotation treatment could commence. This technique, sometimes called vibrocompaction, is used to increase load-bearing capacity, homogenise soil conditions, limit subsidence and differential settlement and eliminate the risk of liquefaction in granular soils.

Once this treatment was completed, 60 load-bearing tests, 1,000 test bores and 40,000 CPT (Cone Penetration Tests) were carried out.



The Ressources

  • 16 cranes in service
  • 24 x 500KVA to 1,250KVA generating sets
  • 38 compressors
  • 50 compaction units
  • 18 mechanical loaders
  • 2 unloading lighters
  • 5 fast transport vessels



Our records

  • 22 nationalities present on the project and 10 working languages,
  • 34,000 m2 of land worked per day,
  • 445,000 m3 of land treated per day,
  • 1,120 dynamic cone penetrometer measurements carried out and analysed each week.

Works performed

Works performed

  • 170,000,000m3 of backfill

  • 10,000,000 tonnes of rocks for the dykes

  • 10,000,000m2 of land created

  • 70km of beaches

  • Project total surface area: 49km2