Shaping the Future: URB Launches World’s Largest Agritourism in Dubai.
While Dubai is establishing itself as a global economic and financial hub, it is turning its gaze to sustainability and “green” urbanization. Among the champions of innovation and transition towards sustainable development is URB, a highly experienced developer of Net Zero Sustainable Cities.
We at Dubaitaly had the pleasure of interviewing Mr. Baharash Bagherian, URB’s CEO.
Mr. Baharash, how began your experience at URB?
Prior to founding URB, I had previously masterminded designs of various sustainable cities under construction, including The Sustainable City in Yiti, Oman, and The Sustainable City in Yas Island Abudhabi, as well as many others that are yet to be revealed. I also led the designs for Phase 2 of The Sustainable City in Dubai, the first operational sustainable community in the Mena region.
After 18 years of experience in urban planning and property development with a focus on designing sustainable cities, I felt it was time to realize my dreams of working at a much larger scale to have a much more significant impact on the world. Thus I decided to launch a unique company in Dubai named URB, which will focus entirely on developing the next generation of sustainable cities worldwide.
What’s the vision driving URB projects? How does URB intend to drive change in the planning of future cities?
Our mission at URB is to accelerate the world’s transition toward sustainable developments. Rising population, urbanization, and impacts of climate change are increasing the need for cities to be sustainable, resilient, and smart. Thus the creation of net zero sustainable cities is no longer a choice; it has become a necessity. This requires planners & developers with experience as well as technical know-how in designing and delivering such projects, which the market currently lacks.
Today we are also at the very early stages of sustainable cities’ evolution. Thus, a sustainable city’s features are rapidly evolving as urban challenges grow, lifestyle habits change, socio-economic challenges expand, and new technologies emerge. The increasing rate of climate change is also fuelling new thinking in planning the next generation of sustainable cities, for which URB is creating benchmark models for others to follow.
There is a true sense of entrepreneurial spirit in our approach to design. Each project is driven by a process of investigation, experimentation, and always asking, “what if?”. The outcomes of these studies, coupled with our expertise in urban planning, which embodies years of research, testing, and implementation of sustainable solutions, form the basis of the design. Each project thus presents an opportunity for a new way of thinking to provide a higher quality of life while protecting the environment.
Our sustainability DNA is also comprehensive and unique. It covers all aspects of sustainability to ensure our designs are holistic, resilient, and smart. We implement and monitor our DNA to the highest of standards on each project, thus providing significant benefits to cities’ social, environmental, and economic sustainability.
Ultimately, our holistic approach to sustainability will enable us to drive change in the planning of future cities.
Dubai Agri Hub could revolutionize the tourism and entertainment sector in the region. What is your opinion on that? What are your expectations about it?
Agri Hub is a highly attractive and activity-rich environment that will transform Dubai into the world’s best rural visitor attraction in the world. It will provide spaces for local farmers to sell their products directly from their farms while offering visitors a new eco-friendly shopping, dining & edutainment experience.
The new hub will also feature a nature & heritage conservation center, an ecotourism center, an Agri-tech institute & a restorative wellness center. The conservation center will protect natural reserves, and archaeological sites. The ecotourism center will offer heritage trips to ancient sites in the region whilst also offering eco-friendly adventures such as camel riding, horse riding, and desert walks. The Agri-tech institute will support farmers and provide investment opportunities for local inhabitants. The new destination will also provide health and wellbeing facilities with sports-focused activities. Medical facilities, as well as a restorative wellness center, will also promote medical tourism.
Beyond becoming a new tourism experience in the countryside and wilderness of Dubai, the project will also promote greater health, wellbeing, and prosperity for rural local inhabitants. The Agri Hub will ultimately become a global benchmark for agritourism. It will serve as an innovative blueprint for decarbonized rural tourism hubs of the future.
Could building a sustainable city in a desert area determine even more pollution or alter the environment and ultimately damage it?
It depends on who is building it, how they are building it, and, more importantly, why they are making it.
In our case, our developments follow the highest sustainability standards during planning, construction, and operations by providing multifunctional holistic solutions with minimal environmental impact whilst addressing all three key pillars of sustainability: social, economic, and environmental. The aim is to create a zero-carbon city that takes a balanced approach between these three pillars whilst also continuously restoring carbon-rich habitats that promote biodiversity and reduce pollution for generations to come.
Has the need of the people in UAE to live in harmony with nature and be surrounded by it grown in recent years?
UAE has become a global leader in sustainability, and living in harmony with nature has become necessary. As humans, we are all attracted to nature which improves our well-being. Nature has calming effects; it makes us live in harmony, improves our memory, reduces depression, and bonds people together. As such, the need to be surrounded by nature will grow as urbanization rapidly increases.
For more info, visit: URB
Responsabile Editoriale Dubaitaly, content e copywriter.