Rem Koolhaas’ Ras Al Khaimah’s Eco City to rival Masdar

by , 03/10/08
filed under: Design, Urban design

Ras Al Khaimah, Gateway City, Masdar, United Arab Emirates, Gateway City, supercity, supercities, Ras Al Khaimah’s Eco City to rival Masdar, Eco city in UAE, Ras Al Khaimah development, middle east eco city, arab eco city, sustainable urban design, OMA, Rem Koolhaus

Just when you thought development in the United Arab Emirates couldn’t get any crazier, here comes a new UAE eco-city to rival Masdar. Intended to be entirely sustainable and cater to residents’ every conceivable whim within its four walls, the new Ras al Khaimah eco city development in the United Arab Emirates, design by Rem Koolhaas’s OMA office, is often likened to that of the zero-carbon, zero-waste Masdar. Cutting-edge solar technology will power the 1.2 million square meter city, built using locally-sourced Arabian materials and aesthetic styles to support the city’s overall ethos of sustainability. Leave it to Rem to design something so grand it could possibly upstage Masdar- we’ll see how it unfolds!

Cunning planning means that the least amount of direct sunlight will strike the city’s buildings during the warmest times of day. Lots of narrow streets and open green spaces have also been incorporated to increase natural lighting, shading and resident happiness.

The Gateway Eco City will herald a new era in the development of the emirate of Ras Al Khaimah, the furthest north of the UAE’s seven emirates and the fourth largest in terms of population. The emirate is endowed with a wealth of natural resources and occupies a prime position on some of the world’s most important trade routes.

The development will consist of five phases, extending over 400 million square feet. Phase 1 will consist of an integrated city to service, support and supplement the capital city of Ras Al Khaimah. The estimated time for completion has been set at 2012.

+ Ras Al Khaimah Eco City

+ Rem Koolhaas/ OMA

+ Rakeen

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  1. sdavila July 4, 2008 at 8:04 am

    A philosophical reconsideration around purpose of the museums at our era and the architect’s role as a curator are linked to architect Rem Koolhaas’ plan for the next expansion of the State Hermitage Museum in St. Petersburg, Russia.
    Check here…

  2. mcvelvet June 3, 2008 at 12:40 pm

    Does anyone know who the actual developer (the company) is?

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  7. PaTrond March 14, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    The white building with the white “ball” next to it is going to be designed by norwegian SnoArc. It’s not going to be boring like the city.

  8. U.A.E at Arabesque Rhap... March 14, 2008 at 12:10 pm

    […] Reading here and there I found out about Rem Koolhaas’ new project in Ras Al Khaimah. Eco city. A city that is planned to be inside out sustainable. To many architects reading this, its nothing […]

  9. designatedagent March 12, 2008 at 1:24 pm

    care to start a city like this around lake michigan ?
    just a thought.

  10. Aaron March 12, 2008 at 12:40 am

    There was a really interesting PBS documentary about the design competition for Ras Al Khaimah that you can watch online.

  11. Planned Second U.A.E. E... March 11, 2008 at 5:00 pm

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  12. Travis March 11, 2008 at 1:06 pm

    While this may be a great example of environmental sustainability, I wonder about its economic sustainability. Today’s use of the word ‘sustainability’ connotes equality as well, and given the economic exclusivity of recent UAE developments, I doubt this will be any different. Creating a city on an island, no matter how ecologically sound, will widen the gap between haves and have-nots in UAE, and that gap is already quite large. This makes the development quite unsustainable from the standpoint of urban sustainability.

    In order for it to qualify as sustainable, there should be a strategy for making the city within a city accessible to all; somehow i doubt this is a priority.

  13. Hugo March 11, 2008 at 4:19 am

    Aha, great stuff. Proud to be mr. Koolhaas’ fellow countryman, this is some really impressive architecture. And there is logic in it all, knowing mr. Koolhaas’ work, but can’t wait to see it explained.

    This should make an excellent show case on sustainable urban life. Now only wait till it’s made and available for the masses.

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  15. Nick Simpson March 10, 2008 at 7:00 pm

    It’d be interesting to see how the spacial planning works here… And the densities seem odd for a city like this – two lines of tall buildings away from the centre, very strange… Still, I’m sure there’s some logic behind it. I hope the building design takes something from the vernacular Arabian courtyard houses (which strangely enough were on Around the World in 80 Gardens last night) and don’t go for too technical a solution – I don’t think climatic design is quite there yet to work at this scale successfully…

    Great to see so much architecture coming through on the site though, I assume that’s what we’ve got Cate onboard for? Great articles, cheers!

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