|Build contract signed for dinosaur theme park|
The Restless Planet dinosaur theme park has taken another giant step forward in its development.
At a signing ceremony in Dubai, Ilyas & Mustafa Galadari Group (IMGG), developers of City of Arabia at Dubailand, officially appointed Jack Rouse Associates of Cincinnati to manage the design and build contract for the 500,000 square foot park, which will contain life-like dinosaurs and exhibits of real fossil discoveries.
Jack Rouse Associates partner Keith James signed the contract on behalf of the US-based firm. Other members of the consortium developing the Restless Planet include Kokoro of Japan, which will supply more than 100 moving, roaring animatronic dinosaurs to the park; the BBC, which will provide access to its huge TV archives on dinosaur research; and specialist architects Furneaux Stewart.
The Natural History Museum of London will be responsible for the overall concept of the Restless Planet, a signature development of the 20 million square foot City of Arabia project. It will also manage the scientific accuracy of the dinosaur and fossil displays, and the educational content of the park.
Museum director Dr. Michael Dixon attended todays signing ceremony at the IMGG offices in Dubai. Dr. Jack Horner, the well-known palaeontologist who was a consultant for Stephen Spielbergs Jurassic Park films, will also act as an advisor to the Restless Planet team.
Ilyas Galadari of IMGG said: The Ilyas & Mustafa Galadari Group, in collaboration with the Natural History Museum of London, has designed an attraction which will provide excitement for all the family, and at the same time display the rise and fall of the dinosaurs. Visitors will experience the birth of the planet, with cosmic events like comet strikes, the tearing away of the moon from the earth, volcanoes, the moving of tectonic plates, and the formation of the mountains and the seas.
Mustafa Galadari added: The parks rides will be designed to portray the environment in which the dinosaurs lived during the Triassic and Jurassic periods. One of the rides will show a shallow sea with prehistoric fish, recreating the sea world that once covered the Gulf region millions of years ago. There will be more than 100 animatronic dinosaurs, like the T-Rex, the Velociraptors, and more gentle plant eaters like Triceratops and the gigantic Brontosaurus.
The Natural History Museum and IMGG will use the facilities of the theme park to display real dinosaur discoveries, and make announcements for the benefit of the international scientific community.
Occupying a site measuring 20 million square feet at Dubailand, the AED7.2 billion City of Arabia project will feature arguably the worlds largest shopping, Mall of Arabia; apartments for more than 35,000 residents and office workers; and a waterway lined with shops, cafes and restaurants in a development called Wadi Walk.
Three hotels are also in the planning stage: a 400-room, five-star property built over the entrance to Mall of Arabia; a boutique hotel on an island in the canal; and a property likely to be in a 45-storey tower near Emirates Road.
With the number of international visitors to Dubai projected to reach 15 million by 2010, City of Arabia is gearing up to be a must-see tourist attraction.
Restless Planet, Mall of Arabia, and the residential and commercial accommodation are all due for completion in the spring of 2008.
Construction of the residential buildings will start in the summer. IMGG has appointed Palmer and Turner of Hong Kong as overall project consultants for the City of Arabia development.
© 2005 Al Bawaba (www.albawaba.com)