Stock Masdar City
Masdar City is the focal point of Abu Dhabi's plans for renewables and Net Zero ambitions. Now, the hub has taken another step on this path with Masdar City Square. Image Credit: Supplied

Dubai: The renewable energy hub Masdar City has launched a new project that takes direct aim at the ‘UAE’s Net-Zero by 2050’ strategy. The project – Masdar City Square – will host businesses that will ‘operate in harmony’ with the environment. Work will start this year on the hub and completed in 2024.

The development will include seven single- and multi-tenant office buildings and a parking facility. Six of the buildings will have the ‘highest green construction specifications’ while the Masdar City Square HQ building will be Abu Dhabi’s first net-zero energy office building. What this means is that the property will use no more energy than it produces through energy efficiency-focused design and systems and renewable energy processes.

“Masdar City is already home to one of the world’s largest clusters of green buildings with Estidama and LEED certifications,” said Ahmed Baghoum, Acting Executive Director, Masdar City. “With the completion of MC2, and its seven green buildings, we are further demonstrating how urban development can be both economically and environmentally sound and sustainable.”

Masdar City has roped in Woods Bagot and Faithful+Gould, as consulting partners.

Prime location

The MC will be adjacent to the Mohammed bin Zayed University for Artificial Intelligence (MBZUAI) and Siemens Middle East Headquarters. The new hub will incorporate the existing International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA) HQ and will include courtyards, a day-care, an amphitheatre plaza, shaded pedestrian boulevards, a fitness center, and a meditation room among other features.

Six of the seven MC2 buildings will adhere to 4-Pearl Estidama, LEED Platinum, and WELL Gold certified. In 2017, Masdar City announced the completion of its Eco-Villa Project, the UAE’s first net-zero energy villa. The 405-square meter villa was the first to achieve a 4-Pearl rating, using around 72 per cent less energy and 35 per cent less water than a conventional villa of the same size in Abu Dhabi, mitigating 63 tonnes of carbon dioxide.

Home to 1,000 plus companies
Masdar City currently hosts more than 1,000 companies from sectors such as renewables, energy storage, A.I., health, space, and mobility. These include IRENA, the UAE Space Agency, Siemens, Tabreed, Honeywell, and MBZUAI.

It is also home to G42 Healthcare (G42), which introduced one of the world’s largest Covid testing and diagnostics laboratories.

"Masdar City is proud to serve as a testbed for sustainable urban development and we look forward to seeing how MC2 enriches Masdar City, Abu Dhabi, and the UAE," said Abdulnasser Bin Kalban, CEO of the renewable energy hub.