Work starts on Dubai's new cultural quarter project

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Building work has begun in Downtown Dubai at the site planned for the emirate’s cultural quarter, which was announced in March and will include a museum, two art hotels and an opera house, it was reported on Sunday.

A large area of land close to the Burj Khalifa, facing Mohammed Bin Rashid Boulevard, has been cordoned off and a number of mobile cranes and piling rigs were in operation at the site, according to a report by

Contractor Al Futtaim Carillion also appeared to be playing a role in its development as it has a sign at the site entrance with instructions for site visitors.

Announcing the project, HH Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum said that facility "will not only encourage our talented local artists but also facilitate global cultural exchange".

Emaar Properties chairman Mohamed Alabbar added: "The focus of 'Dubai Modern Art Museum & Opera House District' is to stimulate the city’s cultural and artistic milieu through an Opera House, modern art museum, galleries and design studios – in short, the entire infrastructure for arts and culture to thrive."

A model of one of the buildings has been placed on display at a special 'Downtown Ramadan' tent erected by Emaar Properties to celebrate the holy month.

Emaar Properties and Al Futtaim Carillion were not immediately available for comment when contacted by


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