Trouble in Masdar City

Kiran Stacy looks at some of the challenges facing what is intended to be the world's first carbon-neutral city.

In an interview with Masdar City Director Alan Frost and CEO Sultan al-Jaber, Stacy learns that the city's plans to be self-sufficient from the outset--both energy-wise and financially--may have been overly ambitious, given the regional economic climate. Bank financing for new development in Abu Dhabi is non-existent and commercial tenants are hesitant to move into new commercial space, forcing the project to rely heavily on government funding, writes Stacy. Masdar has only signed 13 of the 800 commercial tenants it hopes to attract by 2020. Furthermore, the city is still taking some of its energy from non-renewable sources.

Given the innovative nature of the project, difficulties should be expected, says Sultan al-Jaber:

"Do you think that a silver bullet solution exists to help Masdar city achieve its goals today? Obviously it does not. If it did we would have seen Masdar city developed in a number of places around the world."

Full Story: Masdar: ‘No silver bullet’ for problems facing cleantech city

Comments

Prepare for the AICP Exam

Join the thousands of students who have utilized the Planetizen AICP* Exam Preparation Class to prepare for the American Planning Association's AICP* exam.
Starting at $199
Planetizen Courses image ad

Planetizen Courses

Advance your career with subscription-based online courses tailored to the urban planning professional.
Starting at $14.95 a month
Woman wearing city map tote bag

City Shoulder Totes - New Cities Added!

Durable CityFabric© shoulder tote bags available from 9 different cities.
$22.00
DVD Cover of The Story of Sprawl

The Story of Sprawl

See how America changed shape in this collection of historic films that visually document how sprawl evolved.
$29.99 for 2-DVD SET