Expo 2020 Dubai has awarded the construction contract to build the Al Wasl Plaza to Abu Dhabi-based contractor Cimolai Rimond Middle East, according to a senior official.

Ahmed Al Khatib, Expo 2020’s vice-president of real estate and delivery, made the announcement during a speech at The Big 5 construction exhibition in Dubai on Sunday, according to Zawya.

“I am happy to announce that Cimolai Rimond Middle East has been awarded the contract to build the steel structure for Al Wasl Plaza,” he said.

READ: $2.9bn Expo 2020 Dubai construction contracts awarded in 2017

“When finished, the [Al Wasl Plaza] structure will weigh 2,265 tonnes and enclose a space of about 724,000 cubic metres, the same volume as 290 Olympic-sized swimming pools.”

Cimolai Rimond, which is an Abu Dhabi-based joint venture between Italian firms Cimolai, a structural steelmaker and contractor and construction contractor Rimond, will handle this final major design element of the Expo 2020 site.

Topped by a 65m-high domed trellis inspired by the shape of the Expo 2020 Dubai logo, the Adrian Smith + Gordon Gill Architecture (AS+GG) designed plaza will also feature restaurants, fountains, and parks.

Al Wasl Plaza and the thematic districts are set to be completed by October 2019, a year before testing and commissioning for security and operations are due to be carried out, Al Khatib added.

READ: Design of Expo 2020 Dubai’s Al Wasl Plaza revealed

“Across the site, we are laying more than 6,100 cubic metres of concrete per week. The infrastructure works will be completed by end of 2018. From April 2018, we will hand over the plots for the countries. We have over 90 self-built pavilions by the countries,” he said.

Construction contracts worth $2.94bn (AED10.8bn) have been awarded by Expo 2020 Dubai so far this year, with around $112m (AED411m) of non-construction contracts awarded in 2017.

Expo 2020 will focus on operational expenditure next year as it moves into the final stages of delivery, with more than half of the contracts awarded going to SMEs to date.

The event will reach its targeted delivery of construction contracts worth $3bn (AED11bn) after it awards the packages for urban planning and event overlay, due to be finalised by early next year.