DECONSTRUCTED: World of pain

An extravagant development in Dubai comes to a halt. PERE magazine October 2009

The World, a series of what were to be man-made islands arranged to resemble a map of the earth, is not enough.

According to reports, work on the development off the coast of Dubai has come to a halt. Just a few years ago The World was being touted as the eventual playground for the rich and famous, who presumably were to buy plots that best suited their geographic affiliations (Scottish singerRod Stewart was to buy “Scotland”, etc).

Instead, construction of the islands and their surrounding breakwaters proved to be more difficult than anticipated, and the properties have not been selling. Irish property mogul John O’Dolan, who led a group of investors to buy “Ireland” for $38 million, recently committed suicide as his assets crumbled. 

Speaking to London’s The Times, an unnamed estate agent in Dubai said: “The World has been cancelled. It doesn’t even look like the world. Basically there is one island that is maintained that is said to be owned by the Sheikh [Dubai’s ruler] and the rest looks like a pile of muck.”

At least the furthest reaches of the Inland Empire are habitable, albeit without lovely views of the Arabian Sea