Eminvest plans Lyon city in Dubai
Dubai, January 5, 2008
Eminvest, a Dubai-based investment firm, plans to build its version of the French city Lyon in Dubai.
Due to be completed by 2012, the project will have cafes, cinemas and schools, Lyon officials were quoted as saying in a report in the Gulf Daily News, our sister newspaper.
The project is the brainchild of Buti Saeed Al Gandhi, who heads Emivest. Al Gandhi fell in love with Lyon, one of the France's three biggest cities, after travelling there as part of plans for a French-language university in Dubai in partnership with Lyon-2 university, the report said.
The draft accord on the new city is expected to be signed next week between the French city and Dubai, it said.
He wants to extend the university project into a huge district named Lyon-Dubai City that will be graced with public squares, restaurants, outdoor cafes and museums, and play host to the same gastronomic, cultural, sporting and economic institutions found in the French urban hub.
"We're not going to just copy the buildings and make a type of Lyon decor, but reinstitute the city's atmosphere with boutiques and cultural places in the heart of the city, transport, a social mix, streets and lanes," said urban specialist Jean-Paul Lebas, who is working on the project.