In yet another attempt at a Guinness World Record, Dubai will dazzle the world with the largest fireworks display ever on New Year’s Eve.
Where will it happen?
Palm Jumeirah island and The World islands will be the centre of attractions this New Year’s Eve as 400 locations in around the islands have been earmarked to launch the spectacular display.
What is the record?
It will take just 60 seconds for 200 pyro-technicians in Dubai to break the world record for the largest fireworks, currently held by Kuwait since 2012, when to celebrate its 50th national day, it fired 77,282 shots of fireworks spread across five kilometres, a spectacle that lasted for 64 minutes.
How long will it last?
Designed by US-based firm ‘Fireworks by Grucci’ - who also designed the fireworks display for the launch of Atlantis in 2008 - Dubai’s spectacle will only last for only six minutes, but it will contain 400,000 shots of fireworks that will be synchronised with music.
What will the show be like?
The show will begin with a ‘Flying Falcon’ doing rounds of The World islands, leading the countdown for the New Year spectacle.
The display will include never seen before elements like a 225 metre wide and 130 metre high UAE flag, conjured through fireworks and special effects that will adorn the Dubai sky. The flag will be another world record attempt for the largest pyrotechnic flag ever.
The event that will mark the culmination of a landmark year for Dubai, which saw the city winning the hosting rights of World Expo 2020, will culminate with the final salvo of fireworks that will conjure up a ‘Sunrise’ scene, lighting up the skies for around 10 kilometres.
What is the scope of the show?
The spectacle will be spread across 100 kilometres. At least 450,000 explosive shells, connected to a network of more than 100 computers, will be used to put up the show. In another regional record, seven 660 mm shells will be used to fire the main rounds of fireworks, each shot spreading over 700 metres wide.
How will the record be measured?
The Guinness World Record officials will be on the field to measure the scale of the event during the show. Though, the current record will be broken in 60 seconds, the show will last for six minutes as Guinness Records criteria requires the show to last for a minimum of five minutes to qualify for the world record.
The officials will also calculate the number of shots fired, range of the shots and the total distance the entire display covers.
What went into planning?
Around nine months of planning has gone into the design and preparations of the show, with some of the fireworks specially designed for the show and shipped from the US. Technicians have been working on the field for the last three weeks, with 450,000 shells prepared and mounted on more than 60 heavy trailers.
The shells will be placed at 400 locations in Palm Jumeirah islands and The World islands both on land on water, using floating platoons.
Technicians are currently giving final touches to the explosive-laden shells, before they are transported to different locations on the Palm Island as well as The World islands.
Want to be there? Here’s a checklist
Access to the area
Entry to the Palm Jumeirah Island, will be restricted on December 31 until 1am on Jan 1. However, those have bought tickets to Sandance Music Festival, which will be held on the New Year’s Eve at the Atlantis, will have access. Residents and guests of hotels at Palm Jumeirah will be issued passes.
The best locations to enjoy the show from are the Jumeirah Beach, Dubai Shoreline, Umm Suqueim Beach as well as the Jumeriah Beach Residence.
People can also enjoy the show on TV, with DubaiOne presenting live coverage of the spectacle. As many as five helicopters have been deployed to shoot the event from aerial locations, while a large camera crew has been deployed on land as well.
The show can also be enjoyed live through Youtube at youtube.com/dubaiworldrecord.
Restrictions and timings
8am-9pm: Access to event pass holders in their personal vehicles and taxis.
9pm-10.30pm: Access to passengers in taxis holding event pass only.
10.30pm-1am: No access. All car traffic will be prohibited from 10.30pm until 1am on January 1, 2014.
Residents will get access pass from respective building concierges. Authorities have advised residents of Palm Jumeirah to limit the number guests due to shortage of parking on the Fronds.
Each villa is allowed only five guest vehicles, all of which need to have a pre-arranged car pass.
Walking around The Palm Jumeirah will be restricted from 10.30pm.
No deliveries to The Palm Jumeirah will be allowed after 5pm on December 31.
Monorail Operation: The Palm Jumeirah monorail will be closed from December 26 to January 2, 2014.
Safety zones: Police will be creating Safety Zones around the locations from where the Fireworks will be fired. Movement around the Trunk Road, the Crescent Road, the Monorail, in the water between the Fronds in the Crown area will be limited.
Traffic and transport arrangements
Authorities have advised revellers to use public transport on New Year’s eve as the Dubai Metro will operate 24 hours, while additional buses will also operate to help people move smoothly.
Additional trains will deployed and the frequency of train trips will increase to cater to the rush.
Traffic diversions have been planned around the fireworks areas across Dubai and access to cars will be limited to the Palm Jumeirah. Access to Dubai Mall and Downtown Dubai by cars will also be blocked once the parking gets full.
Special parking provisions have been made at Meydan and World Trade Centre from where the shuttle bus service will be provided to Dubai Mall.
Additional taxis will also operate around malls and locations where the fireworks will take place.
New Year Fireworks: Colourful, but green
The world’s largest fireworks display will also be green event. The fireworks will indeed be colourful, but special care has been taken to make the show eco-friendly.
According to organisers, the material used for the fireworks are biodegradable, with no use of lead and only minimum carbon. The emissions from the display is expected to be least polluting.
Where else can I see fireworks in Dubai on December 31?
Apart from Palm Jumeirah, people can also enjoy New Year fireworks Burj Khalifa, Burj Al Arab as well as the Dubai Festival City.
Following the six minute spectacle at Palm Jumeirah, a 15-minute display will cover the Jumeirah beach, with the Burj Al Arab, Madinat Jumeirah and Jumeirah Beach Hotel in the background.
In its annual New Year Gala Downtown Dubai will put up yet another show of lights, colour and music that will begin shortly before midnight and will last 20 minutes. The show will have the iconic Burj Khalifa as its backdrop.
Heading further down, Dubai Creek will have its own show at Dubai Festival City with fireworks and synchronised light and water show.
For Sandance music festival goers
Sandance NYE will be held at Atlantis The Palm on the New Year’s eve as part of the celebrations.
Ticket holders for the festival are advised to proceed to the designated entrance gates based at the American University in Dubai (AUD), Dubai Media City, where they will exchange printed tickets for wristbands and table instructions.
Sandancers will then transported on double decker buses to Atlantis Beach, using the priority bus lane, which has been allocated solely for Sandance use.
Shuttle buses will run from 5pm, with the final bus leaving AUD at 9pm. There will be no access to Sandance after this time.
After the festival is over, ticket holders will be transported back to AUD in buses.