World Island Wonder
Dubai’s desert landscape is transforming itself into the tourist capital of Earth, and the location of the most audacious reclaimed land project to date. From the depths of the Arabian Gulf, 300 new islands are appearing above the waves to form the world map. It’s so large it can be seen from space and so challenging to build that it threatens to push the construction team to the limit.
Go on a rollercoaster journey through the story of The World Islands and see how an extraordinary dream is being transformed into an amazing reality. After the construction of three decorative artificial islands, how will Dubai up the ante even further? Well, an archipelago dubbed The World will replicate the world atlas and will include some 300 islands that will be primarily built using sand dredged from the sea bottom.
The total development cost is going to be close to $14 billion. No surprise then that the islands, which range from 250,000 to 900,000 square feet, are being sold to developers for prices that reportedly start at $6.85 million. Distance between the islands is going to be around 100m and travel should only be available by boat. With more than 60% of the islands sold by January 2008, there are bound to be some super yachts on the premises sometime in the near future.
The Times Online reports in September 2009 that work on The World had been suspended due to the effects of the global financial crisis. And in February 2010 the Daily Mail reported that the Islands have started sinking back into sea. This was later denied by Nakheel and independent technical reports as wholly inaccurate.
As of April, 2010, commercial and residential properties are not currently being constructed on purchased islands, but it is hoped that the Dubai’s government announcement that it will provide $8 billion in support for Nakheel would enable completion of the project.