Palm Jumeirah, the first of a series of man-made islands off Dubai in the United Arab Emirates, is bracing itself for the arrival of its first residents, even as questions remain about how big projects such as this one will effect the environment.
"These projects are a positive thing for the country" because they have propelled Dubai to world fame, said environmentalist Ibrahim al-Zu'bi. But "they are introducing more people, so it's more pressure on the natural resources," he said.
A few kilometers from Palm Jumeirah, which is shaped like a palm tree and is the first of several artificial islands rising off the coast, work is continuing on "The World", a cluster of some 300 islands that look like the nations of the planet.
"The World," which is due to be completed near the end of the year 2008, and three "Palm" islands are the work of Nakheel, a government-controlled property developer.
Nakheel recently announced that it would hand the keys of 3,900 flats and villas on Palm Jumeirah to their owners by the end of the year, about six months behind schedule.
The most expensive villas on the island are as much as US$4 million (over NT$131 million).
The arrival of the first residents on the island will follow a publicity blitz starting Nov. 9 in London. Work is meanwhile also continuing on two other palm tree-shaped islands even bigger than Palm Jumeirah.
One, Palm Jebel Ali, is on the west side of the Gulf, and the other, Palm Deira — planned to be 18km long and 9km wide but still in its early stages — is located to the east.(AFP)
1. resident n.
居民 (ju1 min2)
例: Joanne has been a resident of Taiwan for almost three years.
2. propel v.i. /v.t.
推動 (tui1 dong4)
例: One hit song can propel a singer to fame.
3. artificia adj.
人造的 (ren2 zao4 de5)
例: I eat all organic foods because I don't like artificial ingredients.
4. blitz n.
全面出動 (quan2 mian4 chu1 dong4)
例: During the Superbowl they always show a blitz of commercials.