World Island Wonder

Ratings: 7.00/10 from 8 users.


World Island WonderDubai’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.

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45 Comments / User Reviews

  1. sinbad

    finally an Arab country that takes advantage of oil money to build a viable economic base..
    although i'm worried about the real costs and profitability of these projects.. it will cost them a lot just to maintain them.

  2. Scott

    Dubai is doomed.

  3. Luis de Vienna

    Dubai doomed? Not if I help, and I will! Like many others...

  4. KGB

    Arabian Gulf????!!!! wtf. only money talks?

  5. Rina Ralls

    Won't these man made islands eventually sink back into the ocean? Perhaps sooner than we think? I'd be scared to put that much money into it. Of course, I'm scared to invest any money in a foreign country. But hey you have to take a chance once in awhile.

  6. Faico

    Technology have leave nothing These man maid islands are protected from ocean's power check out the location on Google earth it is said by the engineers that Dubai is the only suitable locations that these projects can be done because of the location the ocean can not over flow on the islands plan for a vacation don't worry the engineers are the best on earth and the always have prove before the project get started.

  7. Brandon

    Great Documentary. does anyone know the songs featured in this documentary are called.

  8. OJ

    how 'bout them ay-rabs!

  9. Reasons Voice

    Sustainable economic base?? You mean for when the oil runs out? Cause guess what when/if oil runs out the planes don't fly and the boats don't sail so how are people to get there for their $1000.00 a night vacation? Kyak?

  10. x333

    It Persian Gulf not Arabian Gulf

  11. Hua

    This Sultan sound like quite an i****. The schedules he creates are damn near impossible. Take some time to do it right and maybe it might last for awhile. But I guess when they know they will be out of their main source of income will be gone soon, they have to move fast. I wonder if they will be able to maintain any of these huge projects for more than a couple of decades. Not many people can afford to fly to the other side of the world and spend thousands a day once there.

  12. catro

    Well, it seems that things still aren't improving in the Dubai property market. According to the latest index from Colliers prices fell 4% in the second quarter. Colliers recorded rises in the third quarter of last year and the first quarter of this year, broken by a fall in the fourth quarter of last year.

    The oversupply problem is massive and set to get bigger, before peaking in 2012 according to some analysts. But with so many vacant properties and half-finished developments no one wants to buy there, and it is hard to see the oversupply ever being swallowed up for some people.

    That said: the wealth in the region made Dubai attractive to foreign workers once, and it will do so again, it is just difficult to imagine that happening before the debt cloud is lifted on the government owned companies, and that won't happen until at least 5 years.

    Speaking of government owned companies, Nakheel will have been pleased to hear that Austrian developer and owner of six islands on "The World" development -- man made islands representing countries in their place on the world map -- Josef Kleindienst has began preparing to develop several of his islands.

    Kleidienst is building a replica of a European city, with a climate controlled street on the island representing Sweden, a Beach Bar on the island representing Monte Carlo and Hotel/Villa/Apartment developments on St Petersburg, Austria and Germany.

    According to the firm's reports, they have sold 12 villas on Germany already at a cost of between 1.5 and 5.5 million US dollars. If this development is successful it will likely be followed by others, and could start a revival in luxury demand in Dubai.

    It take more than a few rocks and some sand to make the world !!!

  13. jpz

    personally this digusts me!!!! It's a Terrible Idea,looks terrible and is a digusting waste of money.Why cant man put his energy/wealth to do doing something GOOD in the world,with all the poverty/hunger diseases etc.that could be worked on..instead of bulding f===ing fake Islands for FILTHY RICH twats!!! it makes me sick!!!!

  14. Rick

    I think it's a brilliant idea. how many people have dreamed of owning their own island? If i could afford it i would in an instant. As for putting that money to doing something good... it sounds like some good renewable resource, sustainability, marine research.

  15. Dorna

    We don't have something as Arabian Gulf!!! It's called "Persian Gulf" since 7000 years ago.

  16. marcus medler

    When you --enrich--- then over enrich(think of a landfill of garbage with oxygen pumped in) a contained environment will consume itself.

    The monumental structures that survive in a desert are tombs!

  17. jane haydon

    Our planet is only in it's primary stage of shaking off it's disease (everyone of us) like a bad case of fleas. We are at the very tip of the iceberg and Dubai is in the process of making sure there are more disasters til we are gone. Throughout "civilizations" the writing is on the wall but we refuse to see it everytime.

  18. Sam

    Can I get the date this video was made?

  19. AbsentMindedProfessor

    Seems to me it would have been easier to do the opposite.. to create the ocean around / within 'The World Islands' sculpted into the desert sand.. to create lined swimming-pool style oceans around existing sand/dunes in a desert region [Dubai] than dredge millions of cubic tonnes of sand up from the oceans floors & hope that doing so won't create massive shifts of weight etc. below & therefore instability above; along with whatever other challenges such a massive project places on land, men & sea!?? But then maybe I'm an absent minded professor!?

  20. Gary V

    An amazing doc, I'm lost for words to try & describe what is happening there. Awesome.

  21. Gary V

    Thanks for the link, I was going to ask if anyone knew of any updates about the project. I will see if I can find any more.

  22. smugg

    i know what's missing there : Tsunami!

  23. smugg

    What a waste of money, land, resources. sick ppl.

  24. Brandon Schultz

    Hopefully they will all buy property there and go interbreed themselves into helplessness

  25. ObamaATL

    Well, I sort of agree with you. I mean, when they first built the Palm tree Islands I thought it was a neat idea. Reason being, Dubai lacks coastal land (around 40 miles), so building more land around water would be great for tourism. But after that it's just becoming crazy. I mean there are still places in this world where people can't even get a clean glass of water. There are places in this world where there are no schools... This is getting ridiculous... Total waste of money, especially considering the fact there is a great chance these fake islands will be submerged underwater in the next 20 years.

  26. soniamaxwell

    Amazing! His vision and perseverance at work. He secured an amazing future for his country and a lasting legacy...!

    It overwhelms me, inspires me and challenges me that I can achieve my goals and dreams as well. If that is possible - then I can achieve my dreams that are much smaller in comparison! Sonia, San Diego

  27. InsanePorcupine

    I agree too. Also the great pyramids and Petra were also a sick waste of resources. I mean why didnt they just spend that money on weapons like everyone else. Ugh what a terrible waste of resources.

  28. InsanePorcupine

    Like they said in the documentary its not the right type of sand. The islands you propose would just sink back down into the ocean. Dont beleive me? ever try and dig a hole in a beach when you were a kid. It erodes pretty quick. No I think they know what they are doing.

  29. dong5000

    Just because you have money does not mean you have taste! this must be the cheesiest thing I have ever seen.

  30. PaulLambeth

    I second that - a horrible waste of resources and money, especially from the Irish investors. That amount of irrigation is only beaten in wastefulness by California and Las Vegas, but at least Las Vegas brings in more tourists than that island will and California makes some good lettuce.

  31. upthecrik

    Soulless megalomaniacs every last one of them.

  32. the555hit

    humanity? pleeese. pass the fkn beernuts. may be about time a charming little man made atoll was put to good time honoured nuclear use and looking at events mideast it likely will before too long. you can hope. but bagsy little me please i get to strap that earnest little puppetface fawning sycophant shitbrain little twat of a narrator onto the first missile?

  33. the555hit

    "educational". ha. but yeah, drinking out of septic tanks is educational too. in its own sweet stupid little way. is that where you got your erudition (erm.. look it up.. you know you can ;) i wonder.

  34. the555hit

    guess they're sure their engineering is better than their syntax then, innit?

  35. the555hit

    Yeah the first one's called 'It's Rainin' M*rons' go buy.

  36. the555hit

    ur much better lost for words. stick with it gary .

  37. Guest

    I would think the developpers and investors of the investing countries involved would rather keep a low profile in the media as to not advertise the lavish overspending of the rich. Not really a good time to broadcast such a squandering while so many are loosing their shirts and while hunger in the third world is still frontpage.
    I must add though...good doc and what a project! It all started with a bunch of people playing in the sand with tonkas when they were young!

  38. Robert and Karina Tapia

    Truly the age of stupid.

  39. Matin Lashkari

    there's is no such thing as the arabian gulf, it's Persian gulf. Have the arabs been paying you as well?

  40. Rohyp Gnosis

    A perfect summarisation of the topic as it stands! :)

  41. Rohyp Gnosis

    What an angry person!

  42. jcbolow

    Not to mention the cost of Maintenance once it's complete they have not said to much about that with the other "Palm Island's"

  43. Ismail Hemmati

    Great doc. However I didn't figure out where the whole thing was happening because there is nothing called Arabian Gulf on planet earth. Probably you meant Persian Gulf?!

  44. Dennis Weglehner

    Check out google maps. Virtually nothing has been built here, and in this economic climate nothing much probably will be built. It is just a desert of sand islands and will probably stay that way.

    Its a pity since its such an amazing feat of structure development. Dubai is rapidly running out of oil money and if these sorts of tourist developments don't take off they could be in trouble.

  45. Ignes

    You mean waste of sand - it's new land.

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