Al Wasl Plaza's dome has been fitted with 252 translucent projectors Image Credit: Photo: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

Dubai: The construction of what is set to become the world’s largest 360-degree projection surface is now complete at Al Wasl Plaza, the heart of Expo 2020 Dubai.

The pavilion’s dome has been fitted with 252 translucent projectors that form an immersive 360-degree projection surface which will be viewable to visitors inside and outside the pavilion, organisers told Gulf News during a media preview tour at the Expo site on Monday.

Expo 2020 Dubai tour Sonia Shah, Videographer, Yousra Zaki, Web Features Editor

The covering of the 67.5m-tall domed trellis with 130 meters in diameter follows the crowning of the massive steel structure enclosing a space of 724,000 cubic metres in September 2019.

The state-of-the-art projectors are now ready to be tested, organisers said.

A closer look at the Al Wasl Plaza Dome, which is now complete Image Credit: Virendra Saklani, Gulf News

Set to be Dubai’s next most iconic building when the Expo begins in October, Al Wasl Plaza will now see restaurants, fountains, and gardens coming up inside the dome.

The design is expected to employ techniques which shall adjust the temperature inside the pavilion with the temperature outside, to achieve thermal comfort.

The dome will host the inaugural and closing ceremonies of the Expo and performances from A-list global performers and other major celebrations, on key international occasions such as New Year’s Eve, Diwali and Chinese New Year.

Its name “Al Wasl”, meaning connection, doubles as a reference to the city’s history and the Expo’s theme “Connecting Minds, Creating the Future”.

Situated next to the falcon-like UAE pavilion, that is fast taking shape, Al Wasl Plaza is also the connection point of the three thematic districts –Opportunity, Sustainability and Mobility—that will host 192 country pavilions at the Expo site.

After the Expo2020, the building will serve as a future hub for major UAE events.

NAT EXPO TOUR1-1578925877944
Visitos board the big bus for Expo 2020 site tour. Photo: Virendra Saklani/Gulf News

How to have a closer look

Expo organisers have invited the residents and visitors to make use of the free public bus tours, the second edition of which will end on February 1, to have a closer look at the dome and a sneak peek at other structures that are taking shape at the Expo site.

‘The World’s Greatest Show in the Making Tour’ runs on four days a week—Monday, Wednesday, Friday, Saturday.

Since a third edition of the tour has not been planned as of now, only 11 more days of the tour remain in this edition.

Reservations can be made through https://www.expo2020dubai.com/en/form/hayyakum-bus-tour

Kailash Nagdev, vice-president, Community Engagement at Expo 2020 Dubai, said everyone in the UAE has a collective responsibility to be an ambassador of Expo and get to know more about the show by visiting the site.

“We would like everyone in the UAE to be an Expo ambassador and invite their dear and near ones to visit Dubai during the Expo,” he said.

Almost 3000 people of 80 nationalities have had an exciting tour of the site in this season, said Katy Granville, head of Strategic Communications, Community Engagement.

“It is not just a business event. Coming here, people will realize it is fun and we want people to understand the scale of the developments happening at the site.”

Fun facts about Al Wasl Plaza dome

Covers an area the size of 16 tennis courts and weighs as much as 500 elephants.

More than 10m taller than Italy’s Leaning Tower of Pisa.

Wide enough to fit two Airbus A380 aircraft lined up wing to wing across its centre

Encloses a space of 724,000 cubic metres, the volume of almost 300 Olympic-size swimming pools

Uses 13.6 km of steel, the equivalent of the height of 16 Burj Khalifa

Weighs 2,544 tonnes, the same as 25 blue whales