Palm Islands in Dubai

Friday, 6 January 2017 - 11:00 am (CET/MEZ) Berlin | Author/Destination:
Category/Kategorie: Dubai, General, Living, Working, Building

Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber

Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber

Palm Islands are three artificial islands, Palm Jumeirah, Deira Island and Palm Jebel Ali, on the coast of Dubai. As of November 2014, only Palm Jumeirah has been completed. This island takes the form of a palm tree, topped by a crescent. After completion, Palm Jebel Ali will take a similar shape; each island will be host to a large number of residential, leisure and entertainment centers and will add a total of 520 kilometers of non-public beaches to the city of Dubai. The creation of the Palm Islands began in June 2001. Land reclamation began shortly after the announcement. Palm Jumeirah was built entirely from sand and rocks (no concrete or steel was used to build the island). This was done in accordance with the order of the Prince of Dubai, who came up with the idea for the Palm Islands, as well as their design. The primary objective for the construction of the Palm Islands was to create a major tourist destination in Dubai to compensate for a decrease in revenue from oil as oil reserves in the Persian Gulf depleted. The Palm Jumeirah has a number of hotels, resorts, and hotel residences, among them Atlantis. Other artificial islands in Dubai are The World, Dubai Waterfront and Jumeirah Islands.

The construction of the Palm Islands has had a significant impact on the surrounding environment, resulting in changes to area wildlife, coastal erosion, alongshore sediment transport and wave patterns. Sediment stirred up by construction has suffocated and injured local marine fauna and reduced the amount of sunlight which filters down to seashore vegetation. Variations in alongshore sediment transport have resulted in changes in erosion patterns along the UAE coast, which has also been exacerbated by altered wave patterns as the waters of the Persian Gulf attempt to move around the new obstruction of the islands.

Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber © NASA - ISS Crew Earth Observations
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Palm Jumeirah, The Universe, The World and Palm Deira © Tobias Karlhuber
Construction began with the Palm Jumeirah island in June 2001 and the developers, Nakheel Properties, announced handover of the first residential units in 2006. In early October 2007, the Palm Jumeirah had already become the world’s largest artificial island. Also at this time, 75% of the properties were ready to hand over, with 500 families already residing on the island. By the end of 2009, 28 hotels were opened on the Crescent. The complexities of the construction were blamed, in part, for the extended delays to the completion of the project, the date of which was pushed back multiple times and was nearly two years late. After launching the project, it was revealed that Nakheel increased the number of residential units on the island (with a concomitant reduction in the amount of physical space between individual properties) from the originally announced 4,500 (comprising 2,000 villas purchased early in the expectation of greater separation between properties. This increase was attributed to Nakheel miscalculating the actual cost of construction and requiring the raising of additional capital, although Nakheel has never commented publicly on the matter. Palm Jumeirah Monorail is a 5.4-kilometre-long (3.4 mi) monorail connecting the Atlantis Hotel to the Gateway Towers at the foot of the island, opened on 6 May 2009. The monorail connects the Palm Jumeirah to the mainland, with a planned further extension to the Red Line of the Dubai Metro. The line opened on 30 April 2009. It is the first monorail in the Middle East.

The Palm Jebel Ali, which began construction in October 2002, was originally planned to be completed by mid-2008 and has been on hold since. The project, which is 50 percent larger than the Palm Jumeirah, is proposed to include six marinas, a water theme park, ‘Sea Village’, homes built on stilts above the water, and boardwalks that circle the “fronds” of the “palm”. The breakwater was completed in December 2006, and infrastructure work began in April 2007. Major construction will not begin until most of the infrastructure work is complete. Following the financial crisis of 2008 work has been suspended and the developers have confirmed no work would take place on the development in the near future. Once completed, The Palm Jebel Ali is expected to house more than 250,000 people. In the original schedule, by 2021, the first phase of four theme parks would have opened on the Crescent. These planned parks, which together will be called “World of Discovery,” will be developed and operated by the Busch Entertainment Corporation. The parks include SeaWorld, Aquatica, Busch Gardens and Discovery Cove. The World of Discovery will be located at the top of the Crescent, which will form into the shape of an orca (reminiscent of Shamu). On 16th March 2015, Nakheel Chairman Mr Ali Lootah confirmed that Nakheel remains committed to the project long term.

Read more on Wikipedia Palm Islands (Smart Traveler App by U.S. Department of State - Weather report by weather.com). Photos by Wikimedia Commons. If you have a suggestion, critique, review or comment to this blog entry, we are looking forward to receive your e-mail at comment@wingsch.net. Please name the headline of the blog post to which your e-mail refers to in the subject line.




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