Outdoor LEDs Arrive on Dubai’s Busiest Road


The Road and Transport Authority of Dubai trusted Hills Advertising to design, install and operate two 10-millimeter SMD pixel pitch LED outdoor Gantries in Sheikh Zayed Road, which is the busiest and most prestigious road in Dubai, located about half a mile from the tallest building in the world- Burj Khalifa

Nominating Company: Hills Advertising, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Venue: The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) in Dubai, Dubai, United Arab Emirates
Project: The Road and Transport Authority of Dubai
Category: Transportation

Integrity, sustainability, awareness and promotion were the main objectives of this project, according to which the architecture and the systems were carefully chosen. RTA trusted Hills Advertising to build a structure with unique design elements that supported the upcoming Dubai EXPO2020, integrated with other transportation systems and offered maximum awareness to an average traffic flow of more than 300,000 cars daily. Hills Advertising achieved this goal in February 2015 by installing ‘The Golden Gates,’ which measure 160 square meters over a span of 30 meters across an eight-lane highway. The Golden Gates ensure extraordinary visibility both day and night, which is why RTA actively chooses them to promote traffic safety awareness massages and to promote the Expo 2020. Environmental sustainability also excels because our screens uphold the highest environmental standards. The Golden Gates are considered the most expensive out-of-home media worldwide due to the importance of the location, system and project architecture

Every large-scale project comes with challenges. Installing the Golden Gates presented a challenge due to the grand size of the structures and screen, especially being located in the largest and busiest road in the city, Sheikh Zayed Road. The method of statements and shifting the physical materials from the plant to the site also proved challenging, including road closure of an eight-lane highway with an average traffic flow of 300,000 cars daily. Moreover, the development of the actual screen was the primary challenge because the weather in Dubai can reach up to 50 degrees Celsius in the summer. Maintenance of the screen was considered one of the major obstacles since closing the road for maintenance, cleaning and fixing the screen is very difficult due to the required time and material. Finally, starting the screens on site was a major challenge as well due to all the testing and commissioning work.

The solutions were carefully engineered civil, mechanical and electrical works matching international best practices and site conditions. Wide catwalk design allowed easy access for back maintenance. Top water arm for screen cleaning connected to a lower drainage system to protect the road from wet spots. All structures were clad and touched up at the plant. Screens designed and tested with a passive cooling scheme (without AC) considering Dubai’s climate. Installation was divided into two phases: column/vertical elements installed separately by closing two lanes of the road; then the 30-meter horizontal structure shifted on a customized hydraulic truck system, after having the LED screen pre-installed, tested and commissioned at the plant. Shifting the horizontal structure was very challenging and tactically planned to ensure safety of both the pre-installed and connected LED screens and fellow drivers. The Hills Advertising/RTA team solved the road closure issue by closing the eight lanes for five minutes and seamlessly detouring traffic

The most original and expensive digital LED screens in the Middle East and the world were custom-designed and implemented for this project. It involved integration with traffic devices and transportation systems, and a hub that can share massages ranging from traffic awareness to transportation information, as well as promotions for city activities and upcoming events, in addition to outdoor advertising spaces. The success story of the relationship between RTA as a venue owner and the team of Hills Advertising in Dubai is also a key result. The ease of displaying images and text using the Display Management Solution software is revolutionary to the out-of-home advertising industry. With an innovative revenue scheme and unique structural build, The Golden Gates have not only become a landmark for residents of Dubai, but will now also serve as a world example of the innovative digital out-of-home technological advancements that Dubai has to offer

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