While its neighbor Abu Dhabi is working on the world's biggest sculpture in the desert, Dubai has announced plans to build the world’s largest shopping mall.
But that’s only a small part of the latest announcement for yet another spectacular tourism and retail development project in the city of glittering global superlatives.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum, the vice president, prime minister and ruler of Dubai, revealed plans for the new tourism city via an official statement and Twitter.
“Today we launched new city in Dubai, it will host world’s largest mall accommodating 80 million shoppers a year and a park that will receive 35 million,” tweeted the royal.
Currently the world's largest mall is also held in Dubai — The Dubai Mall — which means Dubai has basically grown tired of breaking other nation's records and is now breaking its own.
Named after the sheikh, Mohammed bin Rashid city will aim to harness the tourism growth in Dubai — Dubai's official statement estimated current tourism growth at 13 percent and retail sales growth at 25 percent annually.
Despite the continued oversupply, the emirate's real estate market has been recovering from crisis, thanks largely to the increased tourism, as well as an Arab Spring-induced demand for safe havens in the region.
The development plans for the new city are largely divided into four themes — family tourism, retail, art galleries and a “unique area that will provide an integrated environment for entrepreneurship and innovation in the region.”
The development will be built between Emirates Road, Al Khail Road and Sheikh Zayed Road.
In addition to the new world’s biggest mall, which will be named “Mall of the World,” the project will also build 100 hotels, a park that will be "30 percent bigger than Hyde Park in London" (totalling 455 acres) and an international family attraction in collaboration with Universal Studios.
The family attraction will be the biggest of its kind in the Middle East and African region.
“The objective of this new initiative is take our economic development to a new level and promote the UAE globally,” tweeted the sheik.
The plan is to “start work immediately.”
The statement said that that the development would be overseen by Dubai Holding, a global investment holding company owned by the sheikh, and Emaar Properties, the developer of the Burj Khalifa, the world's tallest tower, but did not mention a timeline or estimated cost for the project.