VIDEO: Dubai Municipality restores Deira's traditional markets

Two-phased development was part of HH Sheikh Mohammed's projects to preserve the UAE's heritage architecture

Inside Deira's traditional market in Dubai.
Dubai Media Office
Inside Deira's traditional market in Dubai.

Under the directives of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, Dubai Municipality has completed a project to revive Deira’s traditional markets and preserve its heritage architecture.

The initiative was part of the development projects approved by HH Sheikh Mohammed last January to preserve the UAE’s heritage and cultural identity.

The Dubai Municipality project aimed to preserve more than 220 historical buildings by renovating their facades and restoring their historical and architectural features.

The project also sought to enhance the urban spaces surrounding these buildings by modifying traffic routes to highlight the distinct character of the historic area.

The development of the markets was carried out in two phases. The first included the completion of the main information center at the Deira Grand Souq’s entrance.

Work carried out under Phase 1 included the installation of shades, market entry signboards, seating areas and billboards, floors, and ceilings, and facilitating connectivity and visitor traffic movement.

Street names and nameplates were changed to reflect the heritage of the place.

The second phase included adding an abra station opposite the Shindagha district, in addition to allocating a bus stop for easy access to tourists.

These sites will be implemented alongside the Deira Waterfront Development Project.

The oldest commercial complex in Dubai was restored and rehabilitated following specialised studies focused on restoring the architectural authenticity of the markets.

The shops were renovated according to the general requirements of the commercial area, and traditional materials like coral stone, gypsum, palm branches, and wood were used to ensure sustainability.

Dubai Municipality is currently reviewing a comprehensive plan for the development of historical areas in Deira and Bur Dubai that will include modifying urban features to highlight the historical character of the areas.

Flooring will be upgraded as part of the project and new lighting fixtures will be installed.

The project also includes the launch of a smart application that offers a tour of the market and information on its most important heritage features.

Commenting on the project, Eng Dawoud Al Hajri, director general of Dubai Municipality, said: “Dubai has witnessed significant leaps in its development over the last few decades.

"However, this drive for modernity has not diminished the importance of traditional markets, which have been at the heart of the city’s commercial and economic life,” he added, according to Dubai Media Office.

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