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Construction begins at Expo City Dubai site

More than 24 million people visited the World Expo event at Expo City Dubai between October 2021 and March 2022 Alamy via Reuters
More than 24 million people visited the World Expo event at Expo City Dubai between October 2021 and March 2022
  • Three towers to contain 450 homes
  • First properties ready in 2026
  • Rising interest in Dubai South

Construction has begun on the first residential properties at Expo City Dubai, part of a mixed-use master plan to repurpose the legacy site after the world fair came to a close two years ago.

Master developer Expo City Dubai announced last week that it has awarded four key contracts for its Mangrove Residences.

UAE-based USF will handle the demolition of former pavilions and structures, while Proscape manages landscaping and clearance. 

International Foundation Group will oversee enabling and shoring works, and Shapoorji Pallonji International will take charge of the main construction.

Groundwork is complete, with over 150,000 cubic metres of earth cleared for the foundation, ground slab and basement car park.

Ahmed Al Khatib, Expo City Dubai chief development and delivery officer, said in a statement that the project is on schedule to welcome its first residents in the first quarter of 2026, with three towers containing 450 apartments and townhouses on offer.

A second development, Sky Residences, is also underway, with units in the first two towers on sale and a third tower launching soon. 

Sidr Residences, another project in Expo Central, will launch by the end of 2024.

Expo City Dubai is a 438 hectare site, which hosted over 24 million visitors when it staged the World Expo event from October 1, 2021 to March 31, 2022.

A local real estate broker told AGBI he has noted some rising interest in properties around Dubai South, where Expo City is located, spurred by Dubai’s $35 billion plan to turn the nearby Al Maktoum International into the busiest airport in the world.

However, he cautioned that near-term benefits might be limited compared to more developed areas in Dubai.

“For the same prices, you could buy in a more developed and central location,” he said, declining to be named.

“However, this location is unique for its planned sustainability concepts. But it will take a long time for the whole experience to come together.” 

Plans for the wider Expo Central and Expo Valley master development include car-free lanes and dedicated tracks for bicycles, with access to all the attractions of Expo City via a corridor for pedestrians, cyclists and autonomous vehicles, along with a nature reserve and hiking trails.

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