Dubai launches giant palm tree
has unveiled plans for a palm
tree-shaped resort island on land
reclaimed from the sea that will
add 120 kilometres of sandy beaches
and be visible from the moon.
Island" will include 2,000
villas, up to 40 luxury hotels,
shopping complexes, cinemas and
the Middle East's first marine
park, said Sultan bin Sulayem,
chairman of Dubai Palm Developers.
island will be built in the shape
of 17 huge fronds surrounded by
12 kilometres (7.5 miles) of protective
barrier reefs, extending five
kilometres (three miles) into
the sea south of Dubai city.
project has taken four years of
methodical planning and exhaustive
feasibility studies to ensure
that the islands can be built
without disrupting the environment,"
will be accessible by 300-metre
(990-feet) bridges from the mainland
or boat to two marinas, while
the main causeway will also have
a monorail system.
project will be built on 80 million
cubic metres (2.8 billion cubic
feet) of land dredged from the
approach channel to the emirate's
Jebel Ali port, an operation that
will deepen the channel to 17
metres (56 feet).
bin Sulayem, head of Dubai's tourism
board, said the project would
elevate Dubai "from regional
players to leaders in tourism
development who focus on modernising
and expanding tourism infrastructure
to attract more tourists."
on the islands, expected to take
up to four years to complete,
will be for sale to foreigners
as well as Emiratis. Sulayem did
not put on a figure on the project
consultant with Palm Developers
told AFP at Dubai's Arabian Travel
Market that the contract for the
project was expected to be awarded
next week and construction take
up to five years.
With its oil resources running
out, Dubai, part of the United
Arab Emirates (UAE), has launched
a multi-billion dollar tourism
drive in an effort to establish
itself as the Gulf's leisure hub.
local Abdullah al-Futtaim Group
last month launched Dubai Festival
City, a project to develop a four-kilometre-long
(2.5-mile-long) stretch of the
emirate's southern creekside at
a cost of 1.6 billion dollars.
And a 10-billion dollar project
to build a new city called Dubai
Marina is already well underway.
It is to house 100,000 people
around a huge water basin within