Dubai, World Central?

There is a development currently under construction in Dubai called ‘Dubai World Central’. It will be an economic zone to support a number of activities including logistics, aviation, commercial, residential and other related businesses around the new Al Maktoum International Airport. The construction area is 140 square km, almost two times the size of Hong Kong Island and the location is estimated to be the future home of 900,000 people; it’s also going to be home to the recently won Dubai 2020.

“So what?” you may ask. Dubai is home to The Palm, Burj Khalifa (the tallest building in the world), Burj Al Arab (the iconic hotel on the sea) and other such man-made super developments which most have become familiar with and may have visited, seen on the TV or read about in the papers so this probably sounds pretty boring in comparison.

Having lived in Dubai for eight years or so I’ve become kind of immune to such things; and the extraordinary really does become the ordinary. ‘New Dubai’ has been built whilst most of my life the UK has talked about a future third (and also I think a fourth) runway at Heathrow and it’s remarkable and is one of the reasons I choose to live and work here; big things are always happening and this “build it and they will come” (and let’s get on with it) ethos does genuinely run through the spirit and ethos of this city state and day-to-day life.

The Dubai World Central combined with the existing International Airport is expected to draw additional tourism to the Middle East, designed to handle 20 million visitors a year by 2020. Dubai’s geographic location (and the region’s booming aviation sector) really do serve to enable us Dubai residents to feel as if we are living in the centre of the earth; Africa, Europe and America to our left and Asia to our right. Living here I’m only around seven hours from home (the UK) or the equivalent (or less) flying time east to a multitude of destinations. I’ve explored some great places since relocating here: from the temples of Nepal, beaches of Sri Lanka to the nightlife of Cambodia. I’m a frequent flyer (business and leisure) and rarely find myself flying proper ‘long-haul’ which is great and one of the main perks of living central. If you like to travel and want (or need) to see the world this is the ideal location, location, location.

Jon’s blog is part of a series about why Fifth Ring people love the places they live and work. Next up, it’s Houston’s turn . . .