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Last Updated: Saturday, 29 January, 2005, 18:04 GMT
UAE unveils mega-waterfront plan
Dubai's landmark Emirates Towers
The development will transform Dubai's coastline
The tiny Gulf emirate of Dubai has unveiled plans for the largest waterfront development in the world.

The vast project will reshape the emirate by adding 850km (500 miles) of new coastline dotted with luxury homes and hotels.

The development will house one of the world's tallest skyscrapers and encompass an area nearly three times the size of Washington DC.

The first phase is expected to be finished in about five years' time.

The Dubai Waterfront will be split between land and sea and include a new city centre.

It will include a 75km desert canal and an arc of manmade islands sweeping deep into the Gulf.

The construction will cover 440 square kilometres and accommodate 400,000 people.

"This is Dubai's biggest project yet and the world's largest waterfront development," said Dubai Crown Prince Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Foreign firms have been allowed to invest in the project, a first for the UAE after restrictions on outside partnerships were eased.

Nakheel, the state-run firm behind the development, has not disclosed the cost of project, but local experts say it will run into tens of billions of dollars.

The emirate has already started extending its 60km coastline with a manmade archipelago hosting luxury homes and hotels.

The unfinished islands are said to be visible from space.

High hopes for Dubai skyscraper
25 Feb 03 |  Business

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