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Dubai approves new $2 billion island plan with giant ferris wheel

Published on Feb 13, 2013 11:04 PM

DUBAI (REUTERS) - Dubai gave the go ahead on Wednesday to plans for a new US$1.6 billion (S$ 2 billion) island project featuring the world's largest ferris wheel at its centre, as the emirate resumes constructing extravagant projects reminiscent of its boom years.

The emirate is already home to lavish property landmarks such as manmade islands in the shape of palms and the world's tallest tower, projects which were built using high amounts of leverage and which triggered its 2009 credit crisis.

Dubai's ruler approved the 6 billion dirham Bluewaters Island development on Wednesday, which includes a 210 metre high ferris wheel, the Dubai Eye. The wheel, which will cost one billion dirhams, is inspired by the 135 metre high London Eye on the River Thames.

State-owned Meraas Holding will develop the Bluewaters project, which will begin construction in April, state news agency WAM said. Building on the Dubai Eye is slated to begin in the second quarter this year.

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