Construction underway for CBT-designed Masdar Phase 2 masterplan

Construction is currently underway for the second phase of Masdar City designed by CBT, which focuses on pedestrian-oriented community master plan.

Images courtesy of CBT Architects.

Work begins with Phase 2’s Masdar Institute Neighborhood, which is expected to be completed by 2020.

Due to the construction process, the driverless Personal Rapid Transit network will be temporarily closed, with alternative means of transportation provided for the duration of the closure.

The construction works include an expansion of the current PRT network which will operate alongside the existing PRT and cover a 1 kilometre route.

The expansion will include two new stops linking Masdar Institute (part of Khalifa University of Science & Technology), the headquarters of the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) and the recently announced “My City Centre Masdar” shopping mall.

The project, which is part of the most intensive period of expansion in Masdar City’s history, will link the central Masdar City Podium with the North Car Park, providing more than 100,000 square metres of new development.

“The Phase 2 DMP (Detailed Master Plan) encourages creativity and collaboration in one of the world’s hottest climates, and is a replicable and market-friendly model for sustainable urbanism that is aligned with local regulation guidelines, yet maintains its identity as a truly walkable and comfortable city,” said CBT Architects.

“[Phase 2] focuses on outdoor environmental comfort and establishing a walkable cityscape by orienting streets and sikkak (pedestrian pathways) towards prevailing winds to create cool and shaded areas for walking, biking, and commuting to the city’s other neighbourhoods.”

Masdar City is subdivided into education and commercial zones dedicated to sustainable design and energy technologies – functions that will be also be present in the 6,7000,000sq foot Phase 2 masterplan, as well as featuring additional elements such as a new research development cluster, shops and restaurants, residential neighbourhoods, community centres, mosques and schools.

Inspired by UAE’s local culture and natural environment, Phase 2 will utilise passive design principles such as implementing fine grain fabric, environmental optimisation and hydro-zoning in order to enhance its sustainable strategies.

The architects re-evaluated the scale of blocks and buildings in the second phase of the project, as well as public and private programming and circulation strategies, while stayed true to the original design intentions.

“The DMP leverages renewable energies and passive urban planning strategies to achieve a 40 percent reduction in energy consumption over conventional standards. At the landscape level, it establishes a set of distinct hydro-zones to strategically allocate precious water resources,” the architects said.

“The DMP uses 70 percent native plantings to create small green spaces, as well as larger desert landscapes. These impressive initiatives will create one of the UAE’s most sustainable communities, as assessed by the Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council’s rigorous “Estidama” sustainability program.”

The Phase 1 masterplan for Masdar was designed by Foster + Partners, who has recently opened its Dubai office in Dubai Design District. 

CBT has also been selected as lead designers to masterplan Hudayriat Island in Abu Dhabi, planned to become a mixed-use development with a 30km waterfront centrepiece.

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