The Al Maktoum International Airport at Dubai South (earlier Dubai World Central), is among the largest infrastructure schemes now under construction globally, says the 2016 Global Cities Report by Knight Frank, the property expert.
The master planned city, spanning 145 sq km, Dubai South is a purpose-built aerotropolis, aimed to cater to future requirements of the aviation, tourism, trade and logistics sectors of the emirate.
The world’s cities are likely to add 380mn new nationals over the next five years, and new mass transit systems, power and utilities, and quicker connections to markets would be required, Knight Frank said in its report.
The new airport project will help in shaping the future of the city, in generating business clusters and in creating real estate opportunities, it said.
The mega infrastructure project featured in the report include new railway links to Europe and Singapore, construction of Lapsset transportation corridor from Kenya to Ethiopia, the Delhi-Mumbai industrial Corridor, expansion of Panama and Suez Canal and ‘Super Airports’ in Dubai and Singapore.
In the year 2014, Dubai International Airport overtook London Heathrow as the world’s business airport for international passengers handling 70million travellers. This number is likely to hit 100 million by 2020, with Al Maktoum Airport being developed as the future super airport of the city.
Over the next decade, Dubai South will be easily accessible by road, rail and sea, adding to the business appeal of the region.
The Associate Partner at MENA research at Knight Frank, Diaa Noufal, said that although the project forms part of long-term strategic masterplan, it also ties with World Expo 2020, hosted at Dubai South, and is likely to attract 25mn visitors.
In the Global Cities 2016 Report by Knight Frank, Dubai has been positioned on the watch list for global opportunities, with Al Maktoum Airport being expected as the future of city’s economy in the next decade. The report also draws attention to local infrastructure projects that improves transportation network of Dubai, raising the city’s image as a commercial hub world-wide, Noufal said.