Somewhere around this time in 2016, an online marketplace for home services asked 1,400 Dubai residents to rate their community on 19 key indicators as part of a survey.
As it turned out, Motor City came at the top of the heap.
It was voted the emirate’s best community, scoring particularly high on attributes such as quality of life, value for money and the size and layout of homes.
Five years on, the motor-sports themed enclave developed by Union Properties remains the first choice for mid-income families looking for spacious homes in lush surroundings.
For the uninitiated, Motor City comprises two residential areas — Uptown Motor City and Green Community Motor City.
The former consists of roughly 3,000 studios, one, two and three-bedroom apartments in low-rise buildings, while the latter comprises villas, townhouses and bungalows.
The residents are fiercely proud of their unique city within a city.
With expansive verdant spaces, Mediterranean-style houses, schools and nurseries and the region’s first fully integrated motor sports facility, their pride is certainly on the money.
“Nestled in sylvan splendour, Motor City is a truly remarkable community. It is secluded but well-connected, and offers a welcome respite from the frenetic pace of city life,” said Aldrin Kenneth, an Indian expatriate, and an old resident of the neighbourhood.
Kenneth moved in here after he bought an apartment in Uptown Motor City around 10 years ago. “We have got everything here, not to mention Dubai’s biggest Spinneys, six play areas for children, five pools and a pet park in Uptown Motor City alone,” he said.
An Australian expatriate, who lives in Green Community, said he likes the place because it is extremely pet-friendly.
“Pets enrich the social fabric of communities,” said the dog owner.
Motor City also has a thriving eating-out scene, thanks to restaurant chains like Pepe’s Piri Piri, and quirky cafes such as Friends Avenue and The Lime Tree Café.
But its biggest attraction is the Dubai Autodrome, where thrill-seekers can rev up their car engines to up to 200 kilometres per hour (kmph).
The facility is set to host the region’s biggest F1 race on December 3 to relive the historic 1981 Dubai Grand Prix and also to commemorate the UAE’s golden jubilee anniversary, which will be celebrated a day earlier.
“My son and I just can’t wait for it,” said French expatriate R Moreau who moved here in 2015.
Initially, he had hoped that it would be a temporary stay as his apartment in Jumeirah Village Triangle (JVC) was still under construction.
“Now we don’t want to go anywhere. The mere thought of relocating from here fills me with dread,” he said.
David Takkos Broider, a property sales consultant at Allsopp & Allsopp, said real estate prices in Motor City have increased by up to 15 per cent since the beginning of the year.
“The rental market has also been very busy. This has encouraged more investors to look at Motor City more closely. A one-bedroom apartment, which was being sold for between Dh480,000 and Dh580,000 in January, is going for up to Dh675,000. Similarly, two-bedroom apartments are now fetching up to Dh1.1 million, up from Dh75,000 in January,” he added.