12 Responses

  1. I honestly don’t know how I feel about this. Maybe they can throw some of that wealth to Palestine and Egypt and a host of other poor countries.

    • Maybe if Israel would keep strangling Palestine, Palestine wouldn’t need help from Dubai…. more that Dubai already gives to Palestine.

      Palestinians are very industrious people…. Look how they have rebuilt after decades of repeated bombing by Israel. Palestinians could do very well if they could buy goods from countries other than Israel… and if Palestine was free to trade their products with the rest of the world.

  2. It seems silly to have high rises when they can expand the city horizontally. Just imagine the cost of airconditioning these monsters or pumping water to the upper floors. In an Island of Singapore or Manhattan you have no other choices. But when there are so much flat land in Dubai it seems like a stupid idea.

    • The skyscraper was not invented in Singapore or Manhattan, but in the flattest of prairie flatlands, Chicago, in the last two decades of the 19th century. There are no natural barriers to expansion here except the lake to the east; and the further you go from the swampy city center, the more suitable the land is for building.

      The following is from chapter 3 of Carl W. Condit’s The Chicago School of Architecture (University of Chicago Press, 1964).

      Many changes in the size, design, and construction of large urban buildings would have occurred whether the architects were capable of directing them or not. As we have seen, enormous pressures lay behind the whole building process. The architects and engineers had first of all to develop a new type of structure, the big office block of the crowded commercial area. The growing complexity of modern industry demanded concentrated administrative centers where large numbers of people could work at detailed and correlated tasks. The increasing centralization of the business process, along with other social and economic determinants arising from urban growth, led to an ever increasing intensity of land use. By 1880 in Chicago the price of land in the Loop district was $130,000 per quarter-acre. By 1890 it had risen to $900,000 per quarter-acre. Population growth continued to follow its rising curve: in 1870 it was 298,977; in 1880, 505,185; in 1890, 1,099,850. The total urban area expanded nearly six times, from 35.15 square miles in 1870 to 178.05 square miles in 1890.

      These conditions meant that the architect was no longer a free agent, molding the material of a building into a form expressive of his own spirit and feeling. He had a commission from society that he had to accept if he was to survive in his profession. . . .

      The general architectural achievement of the city and the social and economic situation out of which it came was summarized by Paul Bourget, a French visitor of the nineties who was not motivated by any great enthusiasm for things American.

      “At one moment you have around you only ‘buildings.’ They scale the sky with their eighteen, their twenty stories. The architect who has built them, or rather who has plotted them, has . . . frankly accepted the conditions imposed by the speculator; multiplying as many times as possible the value of the bit of ground at the base in multiplying the supposed offices. It is a problem capable of interesting only an engineer, one would suppose. Nothing of the kind. The simple force of need is such a principle of beauty, and these buildings so conspicuously manifest that need that in contemplating them you experience a singular emotion. The sketch appears here of a new kind of art, an art of democracy, made by the crowd and for the crowd, an art of science in which the certainties of natural laws give to audacities in appearance the most unbridled the tranquility of geometrical figures.”

  3. Most nations want to be viewed as positive, progressive societies. So, Dubai might look into an educational program from K – 12 and into college and graduate school. A good example already in place is the London School of Economics for graduates and Cambridge University for high school students. My wife and I escorted students from Livonia MI to Cambridge for nearly 20 summers. While the students were in class, adults attended seminars of all kinds. Apparently, Dubai has the funds to encourage students and teachers to attend their summer programs, too.
    RJW

  4. A lot of concrete, stone, glass, and steel. Very rarely, a scene that shows people in them. Human beings, when seen at all, are very small, ant-like. No faces at all. No smiles. Not a place I’d like to be.

  5. Dubai is a great city to live in. Very clean, safe, stress free, and enjoyable. The people are very nice and intelligent. The government is also very good. If the benevolent dictator, Sheikh Mo were up for election he would probably be elected by a 99.9999999999% majority

    They have very strict visitor and visa control… yet there are many people from all over the world on work visas…. unlike the open border America. Americans could learn a lot from Dubai. The predominantly dopey Americans that is.

  6. Is there some sort of time lapse on the use of slaves in Dubai?

  7. It’s Western advertising clumsily without guile and thus without restraint, a spoof, a caricature. Ugh.

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