Abu Dhabi, UAE
The Urban Planning Council (UPC) of Abu Dhabi embarked on a major long term planning effort to revitalize the downtown area of the City. Recognizing that the many new office and residential projects which were developed in and around the City have the potential to dramatically reduce the desirability of the downtown, the UPC sought to make significant improvements in the public realm of the downtown blocks which, along with transportation and other investments, could enable the downtown to be an attractive and viable choice for families and Emiratis in addition to the population of expatriate workers and their families. The UPC and the Abu Dhabi Municipality engaged Parsons to undertake the validation of a concept plan for the improvement of the E3 block which was to be a prototype for the development of additional blocks in the future. Improvements planned include: replacement of surface parking with underground parking garages, introduction of new landscaped and open space areas, and provision of new community facilities.
- Existing Conditions: A detailed review of the existing conditions in the public realm was
developed including a complete photographic inventory of all buildings as well as a Building Conditions Assessment.
- Infrastructure Planning Parameters: Building capacities and design occupancies were analyzed to determine the potential numbers of residents, staff and visitors to the area. When
compared with census data, the analysis revealed substantial overcrowding (which was occasioned by the shortage of affordable housing and office space in Abu Dhabi).
- Community Facilities Requirements Assessment: The population analysis of the area provided a basis for determining the type and number of community facilities which should be developed in the area.
Manager Planning and Urban Design Department – Parsons, Dubai, UAE