HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, promised to astonish the world at the turn of the decade if Dubai won the bid.
He said: “Dubai Expo 2020 will breathe new life into the ancient role of the Middle East as a melting pot for cultures and creativity. Exciting times lie ahead – but equally a task of huge proportions. How extraordinary to consider that Dubai, with its 2 million residents, will be preparing to host 25 million visitors, of whom 70% are expected to arrive from abroad."
To efficiently manage such a vast increase in residency over the six-month Expo period, Dubai is investing in four main areas – public transportation and transit, accommodation, a strategically-positioned site and a highly scalable supply chain. Many of these assets are already in place or in advanced stages of planning.
Dubai is well prepared for the sharp increase in passenger traffic. In 2012, Dubai International Airport handled almost 57 million passengers and is projected to become busier than Heathrow International. In addition, Dubai’s massive Al Maktoum International Airport, ten times larger than Dubai International, it is expected to have the capacity to handle 160 million passengers by the mid 2020s.
The site for Expo 2020 in Jebel Ali, within Dubai World Central, will be equidistant from the centres of Abu Dhabi and Dubai and be situated on the southwestern edge of Dubai.
This 438-hectare open site will be designed for optimal traffic flow and efficiency. It will be located next to the new Al Maktoum International Airport and close to Jebel Ali Port, the third busiest port in the world. For exhibitors who need to bring in their materials and construct their pavilions, as well for visitors, the site will offer many logistical advantages.