BEIRUT

Regional

Dubai to build world’s biggest shopping center

Sheikh Mohammad, second from right, looks at the mock-up of the “Mall of the World” project during its presentation in Dubai.

DUBAI: The shopping-loving city that is home to one of the world’s largest shopping malls wants to build one even bigger. Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid al-Maktoum has laid out plans for a sprawling real estate project known as Mall of the World that will include the 743,224 square meter mall, a climate-controlled street network, a theme park covered during the scorching summer months and 100 hotels and serviced apartments.

Other attractions planned for the site include a cultural and theater district drawing inspiration from New York’s Broadway, shopping thoroughfares based on London’s Oxford Street and a “wellness district” meant to attract medical tourists.

“The growth in family and retail tourism underpins the need to enhance Dubai tourism infrastructure as soon as possible,” Sheikh Mohammad said in a statement announcing the project Saturday. “This project complements our plans to transform Dubai into a cultural, tourist and economic hub for the 2 billion people living in the region around us – and we are determined to achieve our vision.”

Dubai Holding, a conglomerate controlled by the emirate’s ruler, is developing the complex.

It gave no details on the cost or the completion date.

The complex will be built near the Mall of the Emirates, which boasts an indoor ski slope, and a short drive from the Burj Khalifa, the world’s tallest tower, and the adjacent Dubai Mall. That shopping center is currently the emirate’s largest and has attractions including a dinosaur skeleton, an indoor ice skating rink and a multistory aquarium.

Dubai has long used high-profile, big-ticket real estate projects to drive economic growth and establish itself as an international tourist destination. Its ambitions were slowed significantly with a crippling financial crisis that came to a head in 2009, forcing the delay or cancellation of some of the most outlandish projects.

Dubai Holding was not spared from the financial turmoil, and some of its divisions sought new repayment terms from lenders on a debt pile that reached into the billions of dollars.

The emirate’s economy has rebounded strongly in the years since the crisis, driven by its trade, transportation and tourism-dependent economy.

Dubai is racing to develop additional infrastructure needed to accommodate a surge in visitors expected when it becomes the first Middle Eastern city to host the World Expo in 2020.

Authorities expect the expo will generate $23 billion between 2015 and 2021, and estimate it will cost $8.4 billion to organize.

The new mall project alone is expected to create an additional 20,000 hotel rooms.

 
A version of this article appeared in the print edition of The Daily Star on July 07, 2014, on page 5.

Recommended

Advertisement

Comments

Your feedback is important to us!

We invite all our readers to share with us their views and comments about this article.

Disclaimer: Comments submitted by third parties on this site are the sole responsibility of the individual(s) whose content is submitted. The Daily Star accepts no responsibility for the content of comment(s), including, without limitation, any error, omission or inaccuracy therein. Please note that your email address will NOT appear on the site.

Alert: If you are facing problems with posting comments, please note that you must verify your email with Disqus prior to posting a comment. follow this link to make sure your account meets the requirements. (http://bit.ly/vDisqus)

comments powered by Disqus
Summary

The shopping-loving city that is home to one of the world's largest shopping malls wants to build one even bigger. Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammad bin Rashid al-Maktoum has laid out plans for a sprawling real estate project known as Mall of the World that will include the 743,224 square meter mall, a climate-controlled street network, a theme park covered during the scorching summer months and 100 hotels and serviced apartments.

The complex will be built near the Mall of the Emirates, which boasts an indoor ski slope, and a short drive from the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest tower, and the adjacent Dubai Mall.

Dubai has long used high-profile, big-ticket real estate projects to drive economic growth and establish itself as an international tourist destination.


Advertisement

FOLLOW THIS ARTICLE

Interested in knowing more about this story?

Click here