Opinion and Editorial

KT edit: Dubai has taller and greener ambitions

Filed on March 14, 2021

There’s drive and dynamism in a city that not just pushes the boundaries but also reaches heights no city on the earth has reached before.

Twenty years ago, when Dubai began to build taller, no one expected the city to reach the heights it has reached today. Look how tall it has grown as a global metropolis, a city that beckons people from the farthest corners of the world who love its spunk, innovative streak, liberal values and spirit of adventure. Two decades was all it took for Dubai to get here. Speed drives the city’s growth and that’s no exaggeration. “In the UAE or in Dubai, I don’t care if you are a lion or a gazelle. When you wake up, you better start running,” said His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, recently.

There’s drive and dynamism in a city that not just pushes the boundaries but also reaches heights no city on the earth has reached before. Skyscraper capital suits it well and the view from the top takes the breath away. Living in Dubai helps shape one’s worldview, for this is a city that has done what many had thought was impossible. It now boasts the highest tower in the world, with the Burj Khalifa symbolising Dubai’s towering ambitions as it continues to build and defy naysayers who had written it off. When Dubai built taller, others followed suit. Now it wants to build greener, and has revealed another 20-year development plan that will take it back to nature. Let’s say it is eyeing a wider expanse; broadening its horizons, while believing the future lies in sustainable growth.

The pandemic has given it new focus. It wants to build an earthy, healthy place for people to settle and thrive. There’s a broader global community that Dubai wants to embrace for which it is laying the groundwork as people begin to consider the place as a long-term destination. The city has resolved not to be intimidated by nature — the heat and the arid environment did not deter and discourage its builders in the past. They have resolved that it will not in the future.

A greener Dubai with 60 per cent of city being converted into nature reserves is something only Dubai can dream of and accomplish. Urban planning is being redefined in this vertical city that is looking to work closely with nature. It wants not just people, but migrating birds and animals to make it their home. In other words, the leadership wants to make the desert not just an oasis but a green habitat where people, industry and nature can co-exist in peace and harmony. Dubai 2040 promises to be the city of greener dreams.

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