Some projects that cross my desk are blatantly not as “green” as their investors want us to believe, yet have many redeeming qualities. Take Al Hamra Real Estate’s breakout mega-development, Falcon Island. It’s slated for construction in Ras-al-Khaimah, the emirate north of Dubai, and it’s going gangbusters with solar energy.
Picked to work on this most bespoke island development, international architecture studio A++ is going all out to make sure it keeps pace with some of the most rigorous environmental standards. Relatively speaking, of course, given the multimillion dollar price tag.
Falcon Island will comprise 150 luxurious villas and 11 mansions, which will be equipped with state-of-the-art energy systems - both generating systems and smart systems that maximize energy efficiency. And we expect they’ll be extravagantly decked out inside as well, given this statement on the press release.
“Through exclusive partnerships with interior design group, Luxury Living, and home furnishing brands Bentley Home, Fendi Casa, and Kenzo Maison, each of the villas will combine sustainable technologies with quality craftsmanship.”
It is unabashedly over the top, yet it has a green conscience. Which might be more like a sense of survival, because anyone who is paying attention knows that going off grid is the way of the future. Not only will the bridge entering the island have a solar roof, but the villas will also have rooftop panels.
This accumulated solar energy won’t only provide enough energy for lighting and electricity, but it will also be used to power an on-site desalination plant, street lights, and possibly a solar-powered cooling system.
“The whole complex will be characterized by the implementation of high sustainability systems , both for the production of electricity as well as for the production of thermal energy,” writes A++.
“The villas will be built using a partial pre-cast assembly, performed by dedicated companies in protected environment thereby ensuring effective control of the quality of the implementation, [and] the villas will be characterized by the use of sustainable materials and technical systems with low consumption and low maintenance.”
Which is to say, A++ appears to be super committed to making this an awesome testing ground for advanced technology, which is a great idea.
Though we really aren’t comfortable with the notion that only a privileged group, a group that can afford more than USD 3 million for a waterfront mansion, can have access to this kind of self-sufficiency, we don’t mind using them as guinea pigs for some new ideas.
And then hopefully in time the technology will become more scalable for a wider audience.