Skip to main content
Part of complete coverage on

No elevators in Burj Khalifa? Residents face threats over fees dispute

By CNN Staff
February 12, 2014 -- Updated 0235 GMT (1035 HKT)
Completed in 2010 in Dubai, Burj Khalifa's architectural height is 2,717 feet (828 meters) and is occupied to a height of 1,918 feet (584.5 meters). A building's architectural height may include spires, but not antennas, flag poles or signage, according to the Council on Tall Buildings criteria. Completed in 2010 in Dubai, Burj Khalifa's architectural height is 2,717 feet (828 meters) and is occupied to a height of 1,918 feet (584.5 meters). A building's architectural height may include spires, but not antennas, flag poles or signage, according to the Council on Tall Buildings criteria.
HIDE CAPTION
World's tallest buildings
World's tallest buildings
2. Makkah Royal Clock Tower Hotel, Saudi Arabia
3. Taipei 101, Taiwan
4. Shanghai World Financial Center, China
5. International Commerce Centre, Hong Kong
6. (tie) Petronas Towers 1 and 2, Malaysia
8. Zifeng Tower, China
9. Willis Tower, USA
10. KK100, China
11. Guangzhou International Finance Center, China
12. Trump International Hotel & Tower, USA
13. Jin Mao Tower, China
14. Princess Tower, United Arab Emirates
15. Al Hamra Tower, Kuwait
16. Two International Finance Centre, Hong Kong
17. 23 Marina, United Arab Emirates
18. CITIC Plaza, China
19. Shun Hing Square, China
20. Empire State Building, New York City
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
11
12
13
14
15
16
17
18
19
20
>
>>
STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Emaar Properties, which runs Dubai's Burj Khalifa, threatens to suspend services
  • It says some residents of the world's tallest building failed to pay service charges
  • A one-bed apartment in the 160-story tower is for rent at $55,000 per year

(CNN) -- What is it like to live in the tallest building in the world?

Well, if the elevators stop, not that great.

Unplugged air conditioning and out-of-service elevators became a real threat for residents of the 160-story Burj Khalifa skyscraper in Dubai over the weekend.

Emaar Properties, the Dubai developer that runs the tower, warned residents it would shut down building services during a dispute over unpaid fees.

"A circular has been issued to remind and urge residents to pay the service charges to ensure the seamless management of the common areas and other community amenities," Emaar's spokesperson told CNN.

Building even taller than the Burj?
Photographer Daniel Cheong spent the past six months photographing the record-breaking skyline of Dubai, UAE, at just the right moments. Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building at 2,722 feet, is seen here from the 79th floor of the Index Tower. Photographer Daniel Cheong spent the past six months photographing the record-breaking skyline of Dubai, UAE, at just the right moments. Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest building at 2,722 feet, is seen here from the 79th floor of the Index Tower.
Stunning photos of Dubai's skyline
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
>
>>
Stunning photos of Dubai\'s skyline Stunning photos of Dubai's skyline

"It was sent after repeated reminders to pay the pending service charges and following multiple attempts to get the attention of the defaulting home-owners," the spokesperson said.

The increasingly populous and built-up corridor connecting Abu Dhabi and Dubai has inspired many to refer to this core axis as "Abu Dubai," the unofficial capital of the entire Middle East. The increasingly populous and built-up corridor connecting Abu Dhabi and Dubai has inspired many to refer to this core axis as "Abu Dubai," the unofficial capital of the entire Middle East.
The wonders of Dubai
HIDE CAPTION
<<
<
1
2
3
4
5
6
7
8
9
10
>
>>
The wonders of Dubai The wonders of Dubai

Emaar says some of the residents have failed to pay their fees since 2012 -- and the developer followed through with its pledge restricting some services in the building on Sunday.

Local newspaper The National reported that the developer has disabled residents' access to communal areas.

In the letter, Emaar cautioned residents that the access cards of those who fail to pay will be disabled and entry to the garage, gym, pool, and tennis courts would be denied.

"Home-owners who have paid service charges will continue to enjoy seamless access to all common area amenities," Emaar said.

Service charges are a contentious issue in Dubai with many tenants caught in the middle of disputes between their landlords, who often view the fees as too high, and the developers who run the buildings.

The Real Estate Regulatory Agency in Dubai has been trying to enforce tougher regulations that would require developers and landlords to disclose service charges payments before renting their property out.

There are 900 luxurious apartments spread across floors 12 to 108 in the Burj Khalifa skyscraper.

While Emaar did not disclose the cost of rent in the tower, real estate agents offer one bedroom apartments in the building for around $55,000 per year -- paid in full, in advance.

The service charges, which are at the center of the dispute, add another $25,000 to the annual bill.

ADVERTISEMENT
Part of complete coverage on
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 1550 GMT (2350 HKT)
Experts believe that ISIS may be using a Spanish enclave to bring jihad to Europe.
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 1300 GMT (2100 HKT)
With an efficient subway, inexpensive taxis and a good public bus system, Hong Kong is normally an easy city to navigate ...
September 28, 2014 -- Updated 2332 GMT (0732 HKT)
CNN's Ivan Watson was in the middle of a pro-democracy protest in Hong Kong when things got out of hand.
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 2012 GMT (0412 HKT)
The world's animal population has halved in 40 years as humans put unsustainable demands on Earth, a new report warns.
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 1249 GMT (2049 HKT)
Every day, refugees and migrants risk their lives as they seek a new life. Now, a new report puts a figure to the number of victims.
September 30, 2014 -- Updated 1442 GMT (2242 HKT)
Mainstream commentators must promote positive role models to Muslims feeling victimized, writes Ghaffar Hussain.
September 29, 2014 -- Updated 0613 GMT (1413 HKT)
Two men familiar with inside knowledge of ISIS speak with CNN's Arwa Damon.
Explore CNN's interactive that explains ISIS' roots, what it controls, and where its support comes from.
September 25, 2014 -- Updated 2010 GMT (0410 HKT)
In his first-ever interview as the Emir of Qatar, Sheikh Tamim bin Hamad Al-Thani defended his country against allegations of funding terrorism.
September 27, 2014 -- Updated 1503 GMT (2303 HKT)
The North Korean leader hasn't been seen for weeks, leading to speculation that he is in poor health.
September 24, 2014 -- Updated 0154 GMT (0954 HKT)
Haider al-Abadi hopes airstrikes don't lead to "of another terrorist element" instead of ISIS.
September 25, 2014 -- Updated 1319 GMT (2119 HKT)
The United States couldn't do it on its first try. Neither could the Soviets.
September 24, 2014 -- Updated 1529 GMT (2329 HKT)
CNN's Nima Elbagir reflects on a harrowing trip to Liberia where she covered the deadliest Ebola outbreak in history.
September 26, 2014 -- Updated 1423 GMT (2223 HKT)
Contrary to public opinion, rats can actually save lives -- Apopo's rats have actually saved thousands.
October 1, 2014 -- Updated 1255 GMT (2055 HKT)
Each day, CNN brings you an image capturing a moment to remember, defining the present in our changing world.
Browse through images from CNN teams around the world that you don't always see on news reports.
ADVERTISEMENT