By the end of 2007, the new Dubai World Central Airport and its six runways will be the world’s largest passenger and cargo hub capable of handling 120 million passengers - almost double London Heathrow’s current handling capacity. It will also have the capacity to handle 12 million tons of cargo annually, compared to Heathrow’s current 1.3 million tons. Dubai World Central Airport (JXB) will be 10 times larger than Dubai’s existing airport, Dubai International Airport (DXB) and Dubai Cargo Village combined.
But the project will not just be the world’s largest international airport. It will be an entire 140 square kilometre city (almost twice the size of Hong Kong Island) which is making urban planning history with its multi-phase development centred around the airport.
Known as Dubai World Central (DWC), the self-sustaining development at Jebel Ali, some 40 kilometres south of Dubai city centre, originally had a working title of Jebel Ali Airport City. A cluster of specialised zones (cargo terminals, residential properties, business & finance facilities, a golf resort and a technology park) will be located at DWC - a new city where some 750,000 people will live and work - almost that of the population of Leeds.
His Highness Sheikh Ahmed Bin Saeed Al Maktoum, President, Department of Civil Aviation, Government of Dubai and Chairman of the Emirates Group, Dubai World Central stated: “It is geography that makes this vision possible with huge land availability in a prime location. The long term benefits of Dubai World Central to the UAE, GCC and the wider region are phenomenal and will place this emirate firmly in ‘pole position’ for regional logistics, tourism and commerce. Dubai World Central will not only cater to economic growth but will be a strong catalyst for our next wave of development as a truly global commercial, trade and logistics hub. Dubai World Central will be a global brand known for its superb facilities and infrastructure and for the boost it will give to local and regional economies and downstream to billions of consumers.”
DWC also creates the world’s first truly integrated multi-modal logistics platform with all transportation modes, logistics and value-added services, such as product manufacturing and assembly in a single-bonded free zone environment made up of Dubai Logistics City, Dubai World Central International Airport and Jebel Ali Port. Other DWC components include: Residential City - a combination of freehold and leased quality homes; Commercial City - hundreds of office tower blocks, a golf course resort, and Enterprise Park.
“We have to make history and approach the future with steady steps, not wait for the future to come to us,” commented His Highness General Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.
The project is the most strategically important infrastructure development launched by the progressive emirate to date. It is designed to support Dubai’s aviation, tourism, commercial and logistics requirements until 2050 and the infrastructure costs alone will run to £17.4 billion.
The entire complex will be served by the latest technology solutions for security, transport and customer service. An internal light rail network will link the whole development which will also be served by the Dubai Light Rail Network (Dubai Metro).
“This will be a ‘smart city’ - a benchmark for future living and working environments. With our approach we are demonstrating our commitment to delivering a leading-edge proposition which will further push the urban aviation development boundaries,” concluded Sheikh Ahmed.