22 October, 2006

After the Palm, the Burj, the World, etc. What Next?

Try Abu Dhabi. Reuters reports that Abu Dhabi developer Aldar--third largest Gulf Arab real-estate developer (after Emaar and Nakheel?)--will announce later this year a Dh85 billion (US$23 billion) leisure project.

If Dubai's mantra is "build it and they will come," Abu Dhabi's mantra is "if Dubai can do it, so can we."

But wait a minute, Abu Dhabi is 150 km or little over a one-hour drive from Dubai. By the time Abu Dhabi's proposed projects come on line, Dubai's will already have been established.

Instead of trying to capitalize on its established reputation as a reliable energy provider, Abu Dhabi wants to go head to head against Dubai in a game that, frankly, Dubai has created the rule book for. I think Abu Dhabi should chart its own course and not just try to play catch up with Dubai.

The Burj Dubai at about 80 floors, half its eventual height.

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