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Wed 16 Oct 2019 02:11 PM

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Expo 2020 Dubai to include a 'unique water feature'

Water feature is currently under construction and will be unveiled in mid-2020

Expo 2020 Dubai to include a 'unique water feature'
Ahmed Al Khatib, chief development and delivery officer at Expo 2020 Dubai

The Expo 2020 Dubai site will include a “unique water feature”, according to Ahmed Al Khatib, chief development and delivery officer at Expo 2020 Dubai. 

The feature, which is currently under construction, is due to be revealed in mid-2020.

“We have also one plot that will have a very unique water feature that is also under construction right now,” Al Khatib told Arabian Business in an interview.

No further details of the feature are currently available, ahead of the official unveiling next year.

Dubai is already well-known internationally for its record-breaking water features. Unveiled in May 2009, the Dubai Fountain is the world's largest choreographed fountain system. Designed by WET Design, the California-based company behind the fountains at the Bellagio Hotel Lake in Las Vegas, the fountains can spray 22,000 gallons of water 500 feet into the air at any given moment.

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Dubai Fountain is the world's largest choreographed fountain system

According to his official biography, Al Khatib is responsible for the delivery and management of the Expo site masterplan, as well as all its supporting utilities, infrastructure services, roads, networks and transportation. He confirmed that all the major infrastructure work at the exhibition site has been completed.

“So, as of today… we completed the infrastructure completely, 100 percent… All the roads, all the utilities, the drainage, telecommunication, water, electricity, all completed… We've finished all the roads, except for the final layer - we will keep it late - and the road markings, so it stays fresh. The landscaping of the entire site is in progress,” he said, adding that the site construction work had been completed “below budget”.

Expo 2020 Dubai completes site works 'below budget'

Chief development officer says 100% of roads, drainage, telecoms, water and electricity has been completed

According to the budget documents submitting as part of the Expo 2020 Dubai bid, the total capital expenditure for the site will be AED25 billion ($6.8 billion). A report by HSBC said the total budget for the project is AED33bn ($8.9bn), with AED23bn ($6.2bn) being invested in urban developments and infrastructure projects.

Expo 2020 Dubai will run from October 20, 2020 to April 10, 2021 and it is estimated the event will attract 25 million visits, with around 70 percent coming from overseas. A total of 192 countries have confirmed they will be taking part in the event.

In April a report by global consultancy firm EY forecast that Expo 2020 Dubai will boost the UAE economy by AED122.6bn ($33.4bn) and support 905,200 job-years between 2013 and 2031

During the peak six-month period of the World Expo, the largest event to be held in the Arab World is predicted to add the equivalent of 1.5 percent to the UAE gross domestic product.

The full interview with Ahmed Al Khatib, chief development and delivery officer at Expo 2020 Dubai, will be published as part of Arabian Business’ special Expo 2020 Dubai edition on October 20.

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