Emaar Properties has announced its most ambitious real estate development yet, The Dubai Mall project, a nine million square foot shopping colossus located next to the planned Burj Dubai, the world's tallest tower.
The new project will comprise a five million square foot mall, and residential and retail facilities. The mall itself will be equivalent to the size of more than 50 international-class soccer pitches and will be the largest shopping space in the world bigger than Edmonton Mall in Canada and much larger than the Mall of America in Bloomington, St Paul, Minnesota.
'We are expecting an annual footfall of 35 million visitors in the first full year of operations and an annualised growth in mall traffic of about 20 to 30 per cent,' explained Ibrahim Al Hashimi, executive director retail and leasing department at EMAAR Properties.
'Tourism is the engine driving Dubai's growth. We have a huge potential audience of some 3.2 billion consumers armed with collective GDP of $18.3 trillion. Daring planning is needed to win the global luxury tourism Industry over and The Dubai Mall and the Burj Dubai makes this possible,' Al Hashimi added.
The Dubai Mall is expected to be operational by 2006 and will be anchored by a waterfront atrium providing spectacular views of Burj Dubai and the surrounding skyline. An aquarium of glass tunnels will offer visitors the opportunity to wander among sharks and stingrays.
Behind the three-level glass facade, the Dubai Mall will contain the largest gold suq on earth and one million square feet of leading fashions.
An artificial lake occupying an area of 4.3 million square feet will add to the sites tranquility. A residential facility of 2.5 million square feet is planned, while additional retail will total 1.5 million square feet. There will be underground parking for 16,000 cars and more parking above ground by lakeside slots.
The new mall will be an integral part of the Burj Dubai project, whose height will be disclosed as finalisation approaches. Construction will commence within weeks. Hotels, private residences, cinemas and entertainment venues will irradiate out in a series of ellipses from a tower that will add prestige to the entire project.
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