Dubai’s Green Vision incorporating the latest advancements in sustainable and innovative landscaping technology were showcased successfully at the 3rd Annual Middle East Smart Landscape Summit that concluded in Dubai last week.
Held under the patronage of the Dubai Municipality and produced by global conference organizers Expotrade, the summit was attended by over 400 participants, and featured over 20 thought-provoking speeches, panel discussions and case studies, interspersed with networking sessions. The summit took place on 28-29 April at Sofitel Dubai The Palm Resort and Spa.
The summit was inaugurated by Eng. Salah Amiri, Asst. Director General for Environmental & Public Health Services Sector, Dubai Municipality, in the presence of H.E. Jennes De Mol, Ambassador, Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands and H.E. Milos Perisic, Charge D’Affaires, Serbian Embassy.
Eng. Salah Amiri delivered the inaugural address which emphasized the Dubai Municipality’s continued commitment towards a green Dubai in line with His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum’s vision.
Outlining the Dubai Municipality’s initiatives in this regard, he spoke on ensuring sustainability by introducing modern technologies in landscaping, irrigation and horticulture maintenance, and the implementation of a number of programs. He mentioned initiatives such as allocation of lands for green areas, provision of waste water for irrigation using special sewage treatment plants and irrigation networks, rehabilitation of horticulture companies, plant production by means of establishment of specialist nurseries and many more.
Eng. Salah Amiri’s speech was followed by a Dubai Municipality presentation on implementing sustainability across Dubai parks. The presentation detailed the Dubai Municipality’s plans to construct public/neighborhood parks, community facilities and plazas by using solar energy to power all facilities in the parks, along with operation of the lighting elements and irrigation systems for trees and green spaces, in essence, zero energy parks. Projects such as the Al-Khazzan Park and the Palm Park in Al-Awir were also discussed at length, along with the use of green materials in parks.
The Dubai Municipality’s impressive efforts towards developing the Dubai of the future as charted out through these two powerful sessions was felicitated by Falconcity of Wonders, Platinum Sponsor of the summit.
The summit featured two days of sessions that brought the latest in technology and innovation in landscaping to the fore.
A keenly-attended session was the one presented by Dr. Mario Rossi from The Office of H.H. The Crown Prince of Dubai who spoke at length on the use of aerial drones in landscape architecture and environmental design. Demonstrating an actual drone at the summit, he explained how drones could be used to survey in tough locations where remote sensing was of critical importance.
A research-based approach to urban green spaces, biodiversity and people formed the crux of The University of Sheffield’s Dr. James Hitchmough’s session. Explaining how urban landscapes in arid regions present specific challenges in a sustainable world, Dr. Hitchmough stressed on the importance of embracing dry climates instead of eliminating them, by using strategies such as utilizing colourful annual and other desert ephemeral plants during the right seasons of the year. He also emphasized the use of research and took the audience through the nuances of biodiversity in the region.
Day 1 featured sessions presented by speakers from W Architecture & Landscape Architecture – US, Khatib & Alami, The Singapore Institute of Landscape Architects, Qatar University and premium sponsors Falconcity of Wonders, SLA, Convic, Sites International, TigerTurf UK, Zeoplant LLC, speaking on topics ranging from landscaping from a private developer’s perspective; design with nature; impact of urban spaces on public health; ecological restoration; sustainable landscape architecture; artificial turf; irrigation solutions; adversity in landscape construction in UAE; living systems in Singapore; systems for productive and edible landscapes. The panel discussion for the day was sponsored by GrassCo & Aratex which discussed artificial grass and its use in sports and recreational facilities in the Middle East.
Sessions on Day 2 commenced with a case study discussion on integrated open space planning with the case of Madinat Al Nakheel, Iraq, Basra in focus. This was followed by sessions on benefits of using native plants; using seawater for landscape projects and agriculture; sustainable development in arid environments; use of smart technology in public spaces. Speakers for the day included experts from Dewan Architects, The University of Sheffield, Oman Botanic Garden, Diwan of Royal Court, Khatib & Alami, Woods Bagot and Arup. The panel discussion for Day 2 sponsored by Gulf Landscape and Irrigation Systems which discussed creative greening of open spaces, emphasizing on the evolution of landscaped zones in urban developments. Interactive Q & A sessions on both days added to the spirit of knowledge-sharing of the summit.
The networking sessions over the two days saw participants in earnest discussions, with the special exhibitor lounge being a major attraction showcasing over 30 solution providers from around the globe. The third edition of this premier event featured more partnerships than ever before, with major sponsors including Falconcity of Wonders, Convic, SLA, Sites International, Zeoplant, Grassco & Aratex, TigerTurf in association with Flora Engineering Services, Gulf Landscape and Irrigation Systems, Cape Reed, Gulf Perlite LLC, WT Burden Middle East, Global Light & Power LLC, Vision Project Services. The lounge featured impressive displays of a host of innovative solutions and products from companies such as INMA Gulf, EDSA, ADFERT, Green Studios, GreenBest Ltd, Agial Art Gallery, Blue Stream LLC, Cultiwall, BMC Gulf, Corys Building Materials LLC, Galerie Tanit Beyrouth, TANSEEQ LLC, MDT-tex, CIRTA Group, ANS Global, Casa Verde – Live Wall, Easigrass, CCGrass.
Highlights of Day 2 also included the prize draw, which generated a lot of buzz, with lucky winners walking away with an iPad and a complimentary stay at Sofitel The Palm Resort and Spa, Dubai.
Participants were impressed with the quality of the event, commenting favorably at its close. Philipp Angell, Managing Director, Vision Project Services, said, “We are very happy with the decision to attend. Within 2 days of the show we got so much contacts and interest on our product.”
John Samuel, Commercial Sales Manager, Global Light & Power LLC, said, “It was a great pleasure for our company to participate in the Landscape Summit. It was a very helpful summit as we could get good contacts and get to meet high delegates from different companies which would in turn develop our business.”
Mohamed Habbal, Senior Manager-Operations, Nakheel PJSC, commented, “The summit is really phenomenal. I have not expected this many attendees and as many of lead and key concerned companies. This by itself is a main factor of success of this comprehensive conference.”
For event details, visit www.landscapesummit.com
Expotrade is a global conference and event organizer with its head office based in Melbourne, Australia and a regional office in Dubai, United Arab Emirates. Expotrade has delivered some of the largest, most successful B2B industry conferences and events. For almost 10 years, our unique blend of knowledge, experience and flexibility has accomplished an array of consistently top quality events. Today, Expotrade events enjoy such a distinctive edge, they are amongst the best patronized in the calendar. For more information, visit www.expotradeglobal.com
Rukmini Sengupta Roy
Marketing and Communications Manager
Expotrade Middle East FZ-LLC
1002 Al Thuraya Tower 2
PO Box 500686 Dubai Media City
Dubai, United Arab Emirates