With the first Urban Design & Landscaping Expo launching in November, Ahmed Bukhash calls for sustainable urban design across the city’s growing outdoor spaces.

Dubai is transforming. Open-air recreational districts like La Mer, Al Seef and City Walk are sprouting across the city, pulling residents out of air-conditioned shopping malls.    

Just because we have a very hot weather for half of the year, it does not mean that if we create well-designed spaces, people will not use them,”

says Ahmad Bukhash, Director of Urban Planning at the Dubai Creative Cluster Authority and speaker at the first Urban Design & Landscaping Summit in November.

The new Al Seef District in Dubai
The new Al Seef District in Dubai
Recent developments in Dubai are proving that well-designed spaces offer perfect conditions for people to enjoy outdoor areas even in the summer months.”

The new focus on urban landscaping goes well beyond recreational districts.

Rather than just focusing on a building in its isolated self, Dubai’s future developments will increasingly invest in urban design and interconnectivity,”

announces Bukhash. According to the DCCA’s Urban Planning Director,

It’s time to scrap the stereotype of Dubai as a city living and breathing exclusively during the cooler months. Now the trend is changing.”
Dubai's City Walk
Dubai's City Walk

Heat can be controlled with good urban design elements and building placement. Factors like the wind flow, the sun and the light must be taken into consideration in the planning phase, Bukhash explains.

Electricity spend for air conditioning is huge in Dubai; cost must and can be cut down through proper urban and architectural design. Proper design of outdoor public and shaded space can actually reduce the heat by 10 C°.”

Urban design is therefore going to play a growing role in the development of the city.

This vital paradigm shift will transform Dubai to become a walkable and accessible city all year round,

Bukhash predicts.

Dubai's City Walk
Dubai's City Walk


Several projects like the latest ones developed by MERAAS are stimulating the demand to focus more on utilizing shading devices as well as high-end street furniture, hardscaping and softscaping materials in the UAE in order for the outdoor spaces to become an extension of the interior spaces.

La Mer, in Dubai
La Mer, in Dubai

From 26 to 29 November, the first Urban Design & Landscaping Expo (UDLE) will run alongside The Big 5 international construction show at the Dubai World Trade Centre.

The event will display the most innovative solutions for the construction and maintenance of urban and green spaces, sports grounds and playgrounds, from around the globe. The UDLE will also host the high-level Urban Design & Landscaping Summit on November 28, gathering some of the most prominent local and international experts in the field.

Josine Heijmans, Portfolio Event Director of UDLE, says: 

There’s been no better time to invest in the urban design and landscaping sector in Dubai. We are excited to offer a brand new platform for industry professionals to connect, network, do business and learn. We are also extremely proud to support the further development of much needed green and outdoor spaces in the region,”

To know more about the Urban Design & Landscaping Expo, visit  

About The Big 5

The Big 5 is the construction event providing leading-edge innovation, knowledge, and business opportunities for industry players around the world to connect, grow, and succeed.

Taking place annually in Dubai since 1979, the event has launched hundreds of thousands of products boosting the expansion of emerging markets. It has facilitated partnerships, advanced knowledge and industry best practices, while serving as the gateway for international companies to access the Middle East, Africa and South Asia regions.

The Big 5 covers the full construction cycle; not only does it showcase products across dedicated sectors, it also runs alongside nine specialised events enabling industry professionals to source building solutions from around the globe for every stage of the construction projects: The Big 5 Heavy, Middle East Concrete, Windows, Doors & Facades Event, Gulf Glass, HVAC R Expo, The Big 5 Solar, Middle East Stone, the Urban Design & Landscape Expo, and FM Expo.

The event includes high-level summits, practical seminars, CPD-certified workshops, and The Big 5 Impact Awards to foster collaboration, support best practices, and provide effective solutions to today’s industry challenges.

The Big 5 is organised by dmg events and is free to attend for all pre-registered visitors. 


To know more, visit

About dmg events

dmg events is a leading organiser of face-to-face events and a publisher of trade magazines.

We aim to keep businesses informed and connect them with relevant communities to create vibrant marketplaces and to accelerate their business through face-to-face events.

dmg events organises more than 80 events across 25 countries, attracting over 425,000 attendees and delegates every year. The company’s portfolio of products includes many industry-leading events in the energy, construction, hospitality & design, coatings and transportation sectors. ADIPEC, The Big 5, Gastech, EGYPS, The Hotel Show and INDEX are the company’s flagship events. For more information visit

About DMGT

DMGT manages a portfolio of companies that provide businesses and consumers with compelling information, analysis, insight, events, news and entertainment. The Group takes a long-term approach to investment and has market-leading positions in consumer media, insurance risk, property information, education technology, energy information and events & exhibitions. In total, DMGT generates revenues of around £1 billion.