Plans to build the world’s largest mall in Dubai – the Mall of the World – have been scaled back.
The original plan for Mall of the World was going to cost Dhs73 billion and involve a behemoth mall, which would be the world’s largest, as well as 100 hotels surrounding it.
But the development has been reworked to reflect the way property investors are feeling right now, and the new plans are made up of three separate malls, built at different times.
“We are avoiding the biggest of this and tallest of that,” Morgan Parker, the Mall of the World’s chief operating officer, told Bloomberg.
“Dubai is maturing as a city and investors are looking for rational projects. At the end of the day, the money is made by the tenants paying the rent and they are looking for projects that function.”
It appears the plans for the area to be the world’s ‘first temperature controlled city‘ have also been scrapped, or at least altered. The initial idea was to have 7km of ‘climate-controlled’ (i.e. air conditioned) pedestrian streets with retractable roofs.
“Air conditioning an entire development is not financially viable and not environmentally responsible,” Parker told Bloomberg, saying buildings will now be built closer together so that the area will be more walkable in summer.
Here’s an official promo video that shows how the initial plans looked:
The development will likely still include 9.15 million square feet of retail space, with street shops and malls. There will also be 35 office buildings, and 8,000 homes (including luxury apartments, student housing and staff accommodation).
To avoid, as Parker put it, “the biggest traffic jam in the history of the world right in the centre of Dubai”, there will be 22 entrances and exits across four roads into the development. It will also be connected to the metro, tram, bus and cycling tracks.
When the building will progress or finish now depends on investment.
Here’s a photo that puts where the development will be into context:
Photos: Courtesy Dubai Holding.