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Dubai is seeing a population increase of 76% due to the allure of beaches and green spaces

A man enjoys a sunset with a view of the city skyline and the tallest tower in the world, Burj Khalifa, in Dubai in January. (AP photo)

Dubai: Dubai has unveiled an urban plan for the next two decades that envisages a 76% increase in population and focuses on enhancing waterfront space with the goal of making the quality of life in the city the best in the world.

Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the ruler of the emirate known for the artificial islands, wrote on Twitter: “The length of our beaches will increase by 400% over the next 20 years and 60% of Dubai will be nature reserves.”

The Dubai Urban Master Plan 2040 predicts a population increase of 76% to 5.8 million people by 2040. It predicts 55% of the population will live within 800 meters (0.5 miles) of public transportation, according to another tweet from the city crown prince.

Dubai has grown by leaps and bounds into a cosmopolitan city from a small fishing village in the 1960s. The expansion of the tourism and business hub in the Middle East doubles despite economic challenges that gave it the largest population decline in the Gulf last year, according to S&P Global rankings.

The double whammy of lower crude oil prices and the Covid-19 epidemic have affected the Gulf region, resulting in job losses and expatriate labor exits across the region.

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