Dubai has received prodigious attention for its enormous and rapid urbanization. As one of the seven emirates in the United Arab Emirates, the city has strived to become the world’s most global city that attracted plethora of tourists and businessmen from all over the world. The construction boom that rendered emblematic architectural buildings, soaring high-rises, and artificial islands caught the whole world’s attention. While people often discuss about its experimental architecture and they talk very little about its public spaces. Public spaces serving as gathering spots and as transitioning pathways between buildings are as important as each buildings. This paper is about these public spaces in Dubai that are often ignored and intended to identify the reasoning behind this phenomenon.
Public space plays a vital role in the social and economic life of communities as a meeting place and connector between destinations. Public spaces help promote social interaction and a sense of community and therefore, it is essential to critically analyze how they are established in the urban environment. Dubai, however, is struggling with dearth of theses public spaces and they often discourage them due to many sociopolitical factors- the city state’s corporate government system, failure of central urban planning, and social exclusion. Although the city boasts its remarkable architecture and world class entertainment, lacking the crucial public spaces need to be addressed in order to improve the conditions of urban community and create a more connected, livable city for the inhabitants.
What makes up the public spaces and why are they lacking in this enormous city of Dubai? There are many types of public spaces and it is arbitrary to defin...
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...the Harvard University Graduate School of Design.
Kamin, Blaire. "In Dubai, you can't get there from here; architectural feats undercut by shoddy urban planning ." Chicago Tribune, January 8, 2010. http://featuresblogs.chicagotribune.com/theskyline/2010/01/in-dubai-you-cant-get-there-from-here-architectural-feats-undercut-by-shoddy-urban-planning.html (accessed December 4, 2013).
Kent, Ethan. "Where the Sidewalk Ends: Dubai ." Streetsblog (blog), January 5, 2007. http://www.streetsblog.org/2007/01/05/where-the-sidewalk-ends-dubai/ (accessed December 4, 2013).
Jandaly, Bassma . "25,000 Dubai pedestrians penalised for jaywalking." Gulfnews, November 12, 2012. http://gulfnews.com/news/gulf/uae/general/25-000-dubai-pedestrians-penalised-for-jaywalking-1.1104029 (accessed December 4, 2013).
Michael Pacione, ‘City Profile: Dubai’, Cities, vol. 22, no. 3, 2005, pp.259-60
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