Case Kuwait University City

Rodrigo Ordóñez


The façade of the College of Science had to resist desert sand erosion and shield the building from strong sunlight and heat. The building was also to look flawless and timeless.


Outokumpu Supra austenitic stainless steel with dry polished finish was chosen for the façade because of its resistance to erosion and its stunning looks.


Steel grade: 500 tonnes of Outokumpu Supra 316L/4404
Product form: Coil and strip
Surface finish: Dry brushed

Beauty prevails amid desert sands

Kuwait is building a new university campus of massive proportions on the outskirts of its capital. Occupying 600 hectares, Sabah al-Salem Kuwait University City is a project of strategic importance for this Gulf country. Its modern architectural design and its intended legacy called for the timeless beauty and superior resistance of stainless.

Spanish company Imar recently manufactured the façade of the imposing College of Science and Faculty Club building. Measuring about 16,000 square meters, the façade is decorated with patterns formed by small perforations. “Stainless was the safest choice to give this project the quality it called for,” explains the Director of Imar, Luis Asúa.

Imar used 500 tonnes of austenitic Outokumpu Supra 316L/4404 stainless. The specific choice of grade came from the architects. “They wanted a façade that looked absolutely homogeneous and minimalist; it could only be done with stainless,” affirms Asúa.


Seamless beauty, iconic resistance

Unlike aluminium or other materials, stainless offers consistent shades and finishing across the surface without highlights or distortion. “It is the same as with cutlery,” says Asúa. “Silver is beautiful, but it does not have the uniformity of stainless.”

Beyond its aesthetic value, the façade has important structural functions. In Kuwait, temperatures range from 30 to 46 degrees Celsius in the summer, day and night. “The strong sunlight percolates through the perforations in the facade, which greatly reduces the energy consumption of the building,” explains Asúa. Sandstorms from the Arabian Desert carry sand at speeds of up to 100 kilometers per hour, which causes erosion on buildings. Located near the sea, the building was also exposed to a saline air environment, which would have damaged inferior materials.

“The key for this project was to ensure the quality and durability of the material,” notes Asúa. “Outokumpu stainless was exceptional.”


World-class partner

With Imar embarking on one of Kuwait’s most emblematic projects, it could only trust a leader in the building and infrastructure sector. “We picked Outokumpu because we knew we would be in the hands of one of the best companies in the world,” says Asúa.

Outokumpu sent slit coils from Avesta, Sweden, to Castelleone, Italy, where they were cut, flattened and dry polished. Imar perforated the pieces in Bilbao, Spain, and sent them to Kuwait for assembly. “It looks great,” proclaims Asúa. “The project went impeccably well and we are very happy with the work of Outokumpu.”

Recommended products and insights


The Supra range contains stainless steel products designed for highly corrosive environments. Outokumpu Supra range stainless steels have a good resistance to uniform corrosion in many organic and inorganic chemicals. The addition of molybdenum enhances the alloy’s corrosion resistance in many acidic environments.

Cold rolled coil, strip and sheet

Available for use in a wide variety of applications, Outokumpu cold rolled coil, strip and sheet products are put to work across all industries and markets. 


Building façade material selection is critically important. The material must be visually appealing, low maintenance and impervious to weather and pollution.

Castelleone CSC, Italy

Home to both a coil service center and a plate service center, Castelleone is one of Outokumpu’s biggest European service centers. Tailor-made solutions with short lead times set Castelleone apart from its competitors.

Avesta, Sweden

Fueled by a high-octane blend of advanced technology and a long, proud tradition, the Avesta mill showcases precision performance. One of Outokumpu’s fully integrated production sites, Avesta redefines excellence.

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