DUBAI-With contracts worth US$5.4 billion awarded for UAE residential projects in the first half of 2014, industry experts say emphasis on design and planning is key to sustaining major property investment, while Dubai “leads the Arab world” as a model for future cities.
International design, engineering and project management consultants Atkins will use the Middle East’s largest property showcase, Cityscape Global, to underline why excellent design, with a strong lifestyle emphasis, is vital to keep attracting real estate investors.
The architects behind the luxury Al Habtoor Residences on Sheikh Zayed Road, as well as a number of high profile cultural and leisure destinations currently under development in Dubai, will be among more than 250 exhibitors taking part in the 13th edition of Cityscape Global from 21-23 September at the Dubai World Trade Centre.
“With the restored investor confidence in the real estate market, competition between developers is fiercer than ever and the emphasis on excellent design couldn’t be higher,” said Rod Stewart, Property Managing Director of Atkins.
“The developer community is now far more mature and advanced than during the last property boom, and they need to look at a whole basket of criteria based on the context and place in which a development sits. It’s vital that new buildings provide a desirable, user-friendly lifestyle offering.
“The level of careful planning which is going into projects to ensure they are genuinely viable in the long-term is one of the most satisfying aspects of the current real estate market resurgence. “A great deal of thought is going into getting the right mix of uses, the right systems and the correct facilities. What’s more, there is a keen eye on creating a vibrant public realm around buildings which encourage people to lead active, healthy lifestyles.”
With sustainability now a common theme across many new developments, Lebanon-based architects Green Studios, who will be exhibiting their patented hydroponic outdoor green wall for the first time at Cityscape Global, believe green architecture is the future.
The green wall, which can retain three times more water per square meter than any other system, comes equipped with a command and control smart system that allows any installation to adapt to outside weather conditions, ensuring a healthier lifecycle than any other methods.
Jamil Corbani, CEO of Green Studios said: “Dubai is leading the Arab world as a model for future cities, and with new regulations focusing on environmentally friendly procedures, green architecture is becoming an increasingly popular option for developers.
“The speed of construction in the last two decades has left the urban set-up with poor long term provisions for sustainable solutions and therefore green architecture is the way forward.
“Our green walls are not executed anywhere else in the Middle East and Cityscape Global is the perfect opportunity to showcase our designs. The walls are engineered for hot climates and we believe they could help contribute to the UAE by bringing back nature into the urban-setup.”
Supported by the Dubai Land Department, Cityscape Global is the annual meeting point for key real estate investors, developers, investment promotion authorities, architects, designers and other real estate professionals to drive growth in real estate investment and development across emerging markets globally.
Co-located with Cityscape Global are three dedicated conferences – the Global Real Estate Summit, Future Cities and the Real Estate Brokers Summit – which are expected to bring together more than 1,000 delegates and speakers who will explore opportunities and find solutions to key challenges affecting the industry today.
Also running in tandem with the exhibition is the Cityscape Awards for Emerging Markets. The awards programme has attracted hundreds of entries from developers and architects behind real estate developments across emerging markets globally. Submissions are now being reviewed by an independent judging panel with the winners announced at an elaborate ceremony taking place at the Armani Hotel, Burj Khalifa on 22 September in Dubai.