Expo City Dubai will begin selling residences priced from Dh1.2 million ($330,000) as developers attempt to transform the former world’s fair site into a lively residential zone.
It is anticipated that the first phase of villas and flats will be finished on the site in Dubai South by January 2026.
With prices starting at Dh3.4 million, the first phase of Expo Valley will include 165 units, including a mix of five-bedroom villas, four- and five-bedroom semi-detached homes, and three- and four-bedroom townhouses.
Only inhabitants of Expo Valley will have access to these villas amid a nature reserve with animals and hiking paths, and prices are projected to start at Dh12 million.
“Expo Central and Expo Valley will redefine sustainable urban living, taking our high standards and everything you loved about Expo 2020 Dubai to create happy, connected communities”, said Ahmed Al Khatib, chief development and delivery Officer of Expo City Dubai.
Expo Valley, featuring lakes and wadis on what is currently desert, will be adjacent to the main Expo site.
It will have designated bicycle lanes and car-free lanes, and a corridor for walkers, cyclists, and autonomous cars will provide access to all of Expo City’s attractions.
In order to entirely pedestrianise the residential area, all villas, townhouses, and apartment buildings in Expo City Dubai will feature underground parking for cars that is accessible via underground tunnels.
In the centre of the World Expo, an apartment complex called Expo Central is being constructed. It will have apartment clusters that face out over Al Wasl Plaza and Jubilee Park and be five minutes’ walk from sights like the Surreal water feature.
Mangrove Residences will be the first cluster to launch, with three buildings including 450 units, priced from Dh1.2 million.
One to three-bedroom apartments, four-bedroom loft apartments, and three-bedroom townhouses will be available, all of which will have access to podium-level gardens and sky terraces.
Why a nature reserve?
Expo City Dubai will be the developer of the independent free zone region.
In order to create living areas, Expo will use the experience it obtained from designing attractions for the world’s fair.
The objective is to create a desert with green spaces throughout the neighbourhood by growing trees in the desert and utilising the natural scenery.
In the neighbourhood, there are plans for a 10-kilometre walking trail in addition to an adventure cycle track and a normal cycling path.
“We wanted something unique, exclusive, something totally different,” Mr Al Khatib told The National.
“In the Expo Valley we will have a wadi area like a green lung between all the villas, a link of more than 1kilometre where you can go hiking.
“In our main reserve area, there will be gazelles, water bodies and different outdoor activities.
“Attention is being paid to landscaping, trees and the birds that this will attract to create a full eco-system.”
Construction is set to start soon, and an announcement is anticipated soon. Expo is in discussions with a school.
Millions of visitors throughout the six-month World Fair helped to lay out and test the infrastructure, including the roads and Metro connectivity.
With electric scooters and buggies being used to transport residents instead of automobiles, the site’s car consumption is intended to be reduced.
Balconies and floor-to-ceiling windows with a view of the Expo sites have been planned for the buildings.
The starting price is from Dh 1.3 million for a 960sqft one-bedroom apartment.
“The location of Mangrove Residences is in the centre of the Expo so you will be less than 100 metres from the Surreal water feature,” Mr Al Khatib said.
“You can walk with your guests about 30 metres to Jubilee Park, you will be near the Sustainability Terra pavilion and a few steps from Al Wasl Plaza.
“Expo city already exists, we are adding the residential component.”
Solar and sustainability
Sustainable building materials will be employed in the construction of the buildings, and solar panels will be incorporated into the roofs of villas.
As was done for the Expo site, treated, recycled water will be used as the source of irrigation water for the green spaces.
“The idea is to develop this empty land of sand into a community with trees and give this back to nature,” he said.
“Our commitment to sustainability is extremely high and net zero is the vision of Expo City.
“All the units will be enabled with technology to deliver smart homes.”
Demand for Expo City
Authorities for the Expo predict strong demand for the neighbourhood.
On the day of the media launch, a number of interested people came into the sales office to look at properties or learn more about the development.
Anghel Breton, a Dubai resident for the past 10 years, is among potential homeowners who came in with her family to enquire about an apartment.
“We are Expo fans. We came every week. We still come to every event,” said the Mexican citizen.
“It’s a great opportunity for us because we like the concept of sustainability.
“My daughter goes to school nearby and the Metro is already built so it’s good because of the tourism potential.”
Bookings begin on Wednesday when purchasers can visit a newly-opened sales centre in the Sustainability District.