Prime Minister Naraendra Modi today visited the city of Masdar during the last day of his two-day visit to the United Arab Emirates.
It is the first planned city project in Abu Dhabi, in the United Arab Emirates.
The city is located 17 kilometres south-east of the city of Abu Dhabi, beside Abu Dhabi International Airport.
Core of the city is being built by Mubadala Development Company, though majority of seed capital is provided by the local government.
The city is being signed by a British architectural firm Foster and Partners. The under construction city will rely on solar energy and other renewable energy sources.
1) The project is headed by Masdar, a subsidiary of Mubadala Development Company. Initiated in 2006, the project was estimated to cost US$18-22 billion and take approximately eight years to build, with the first phase scheduled to be completed and habitable in 2009.
2) However, construction began on Masdar City in 2008 and the first six buildings of the city were completed and occupied in October 2010. However, due to the impact of the global financial crisis, Phase 1 of the city, the initial 1,000,000 square metres (0.39 sq mi), will be completed by the end of 2015. Final completion is scheduled to occur between 2020 and 2025.
3) The estimated cost of the city has also declined by 10 to 15 percent, putting the development between US$18.7 and 19.8 billion .
4) The city is envisioned to cover 6 square kilometres and will be home to 45,000 to 50,000 people and 1,500 businesses, primarily commercial and manufacturing facilities specialising in environment friendly products. In turn, more than 60,000 workers are expected to commute to the city daily.
5) Masdar City has terracotta walls decorated with arabesque patterns. From a distance, the city looks like a cube. The temperature in the streets is generally 15 to 20 °C cooler than the surrounding desert. The temperature difference is due to Masdar's unique construction.
6) A 45-meter-high (148 ft) wind tower modelled on traditional Arab designs sucks air from above and pushes a cooling breeze through Masdar's streets. The site is raised above the surrounding land to create a slight cooling effect. Buildings are clustered close together to create streets and walkways shielded from the sun.
7) Masdar City was designed by Foster and Partners. Foster's design team started its work by touring ancient cities such as Cairo and Muscat to see how they kept cool. Foster found that these cities coped with hot desert temperatures through shorter, narrower streets usually no longer than 70 meters. The buildings at the end of these streets create just enough wind turbulence to push air upwards, creating a flushing effect that cools the street.
8) Masdar is powered by a 22-hectare (54-acre) field of 87,777 solar panels with additional panels on roofs.
9) There are no light switches or water taps in the city; movement sensors control lighting and water to cut electricity and water consumption by 51 and 55 percent respectively.
10) Gerard Evenden, the lead architect, says that the original plan for Masdar called for powering the entire city through on-site methods such as rooftop solar panels.