By The SeaShore

Dubai Maritime City & Vision 2030

With the launch of Dubai Maritime Vision 2030 and the commencement of construction on the Dubai Maritime City project, Dubai is creating a holistic strategy as well as developing key infrastructure to contend for the top spot among the world's leading international maritime centers.

With Dubai’s aim to become one of the premiere trade and logistics hubs internationally, a key driver for growth is the maritime sector. Dubai already serves as a pivotal logistical trade hub due to its strategic geographic location. It is already considered not only as a gateway to the GCC due to its superior infrastructure and sea-to-land capabilities, but also as a gateway to Africa, as a key transit point between Asian exporters and growing African importers. Despite these achievements, Dubai authorities have recognized that further innovation and infrastructure development is key toward Dubai maintaining its leading position within the region and the world.

The Dubai Maritime Vision 2030 was launched in 2014 with aims to make Dubai a leading global maritime hub within the next 20 years. With this, there are a number of key objectives to accomplish this goal. One of the key objectives is the establishment of Dubai as leading global Islamic Maritime Economy by encouraging Islamic financing and Halal marine tourism, thus capitalizing and contributing on HH Sheik Mohammed’s strategy of Dubai becoming the capital of the Islamic economy. The strategic plan also focuses on bringing smart services to the maritime industry in Dubai, in line with Dubai’s smart city initiative. The smart maritime industry will focus on comprehensive customer-focused e-services and security systems in order to better serve stakeholders. Finally, a major pillar is the emphasis put on developing human capital for the sector. The plan will promote Dubai as an epicenter for maritime education and training and provide the necessary fundamentals to locals and international students in the Emirate’s goal to become a knowledge-based economy.

Dubai World established the Dubai Maritime City master plan with the aim of transforming the maritime sector within the Emirate. The project was first announced in 2003 as a 2.2 million sqm district including one of the largest marinas in Dubai, a 121-ha business district for maritime and offshore-related trade, as well as offices, warehouses, academic buildings, hotels, homes, and shops. The project was originally expected to be fully operational by 2012. However, after completing a first phase of marina berths, the project was stalled by the global financial crisis. Since Dubai’s economy has fully rebounded from the crisis and is back into growth mode, project developers are latching onto the opportunity with ground breaking already in motion on one of the sites.

At least 19 towers in Dubai Maritime City will be completed by 2019, with the 2.27 million sqm master development housing 53 mixed-use towers when completed. Infrastructure development for phase B of Dubai Maritime City has reached a very advanced stage, which will be housing 19 towers with developers of 11 towers either having secured or in the process of securing approvals. Each of the towers are expected to cost between $108 million and $190 million, which gives investors a sense of the grand scale the development is set to become. Damac Properties, the largest luxury real estate developer in the Middle East, was the first developer to commit to Dubai Maritime City. In 2013, Damac Properties announced that it has secured a sea-front plot of land at Dubai Maritime City, where a high-rise luxury tower of serviced hotel residences will be built. Deyaar Development, the second-largest Dubai-listed developer, recently signed a deal to buy a plot of land for the Dubai Maritime City megaproject. With this, Deyaar has said that it plans to build a beachside project on the plot in the Marina District. Omniyat Properties, another Dubai-based developer, broke ground on its $163 million “Anwa by Omniyat,” thus becoming the first private developer to commence construction in Dubai Maritime City. Omniyat plans to market the 225 off-plan apartments at its $163 million Anwa tower in Dubai Maritime City’s megaproject. Prices for the apartments will range between $462 and $598 per square foot. Contracts will be awarded in October and completion is scheduled for 2017.