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With potentially tens of thousands of new homes, hundreds of thousands of square feet of new shops, and restaurants and office towers to boot, there’s no way a megadevelopment won’t change the fabric of its location. These planned communities give residents and visitors access to everything they need, from schools and hospitals, to places to work and play.
Megadevelopments in cities often link neighborhoods or add needed infrastructure improvements. Many have world-renowned architects on board to create communities that fit the needs of people today and for decades to come.
Mansion Global looked at some of the most innovative, city-changing projects rising up around the world.
The Palmeraie; Scottsdale, Arizona
First phases opening 2020
This isn’t just any gated community. The Palmeraie is set to bring the best of luxury to 122 acres in Scottsdale, Arizona. It starts with the Ritz-Carlton Residences, which includes 81 one-level villas and 39 single-family homes. There will also be a 215-room Ritz-Carlton hotel, plus 41 private residences by Fendi—the brand’s first—set to open in 2021. Residents will have access to the 20-acre resort overlooking Camelback, Mummy, and McDowell mountains. It will also boast indoor and outdoor event spaces, a 16,000-square-foot spa, and a 2,500-square-foot fitness center. The community is also set to have a gourmet-dining scene and 60 high-end shops.
Square One District; Mississauga, Ontario
Construction starts summer 2020
Plans for the largest mixed-use downtown development in Canadian history were revealed in January by developers Oxford Properties Group and Alberta Investment Management. More than 18,000 residences are expected to be part of the 130-acre planned community in Mississauga, which borders Toronto. The first phase calls for two residential towers: a 48-story condominium with 575 units and a 36-story rental building with 402 apartments. The community will be anchored by the Square One Shopping Centre, one of the best-performing malls in the country. Residents of the towers will have special deals with the businesses in the mall.
Waterline Square; Manhattan
This five-acre waterfront development on Manhattan’s Upper West Side has starchitect pedigree and a foodie focus. Cipriani, the famed New York restaurant group, will be heading a culinary experience for residents, ranging from personal shopping at its markets to fine dining at Harry’s Table by Cipriani. Owners can also expect room service and personal catering as part of the package, plus additional dining at Empellón Taqueria. GID Development Group brought in three different architecture firms to design its three residential towers: Rafael Viñoly Architects, Richard Meier& Partners Architects, and Kohn Pedersen Fox Associates. Interiors are by Champalimaud Design, Yabu Pushelberg, and Groves & Co.
Dubai Creek Harbour; Dubai
Opening early 2022
Built on more than two square miles by developers Emaar and Dubai Holding, Dubai Creek Harbour will include the Dubai Creek Tower. Designed by Spanish architect Santiago Calatrava, the sweeping observation tower is set to rise more than 2,717 feet to surpass Dubai’s Burj Khalifa as the world’s tallest building. The almost 1,500-acre Dubai Creek Harbour will surround the structure with 24 hotels, high-end retail, a museum, educational facilities, an arts district, and housing for 200,000 residents. Homeowners will have access to an 81-slip marina, a viewing deck, and exclusive waterfront walkways, as well as the amenities of the 121-room Palace Hotel next door.
Royal Wharf; London
Expected to be completed in 2020
Outdoor gathering spaces and water views are two of the hallmarks of Royal Wharf, built just east of Canary Wharf on a 37-acre swath of formerly industrial land on the Thames River. The project is set to be 40% green space, with two new parks and garden squares. There will also be a 500-meter river promenade for walking, running, and biking. More than 100,000 square feet of retail space is planned, including a Sainsbury’s supermarket and a pub from the British beer brand Fuller’s. The community is near a public-transportation hub, and will feature a clubhouse with a 25-meter pool, sauna, and steam room, and services such as a doctor’s office, a dental office, a pharmacy, and a primary school. Developers Ballymore and Oxley have plans for 3,385 units on the site.
Miami Worldcenter; Miami
Expected to be completed by 2021
Miami Worldcenter is reshaping the Florida city’s downtown neighborhood. The 27-acre megadevelopment will eventually include 1,875 residences, up to 500,000 square feet of office space, and 300,000 square feet of retail, plus more than 2,000 hotel rooms and 500,000 square feet of exposition space. Around US$5 billion is going into infrastructure upgrades, cultural institutions, education facilities, and new park space. Luxury residential towers include Paramount World Center, which opened last year, and the 50-story Legacy tower, which launched sales there this past fall and is planning 278 residences, a 255-room hotel, and additional retail space.
Estimated completion in 2020
More than 1,000 new homes are part of Shanghai’s Todtown, a US$1.5 billion project taking shape over the city’s Xinzhuang Station. The site spans almost 50 acres, and the integrated design studio Lead 8 has master-planned the community around pedestrians, while creating a neighborhood link over the rail site. Sun Hung Kai Properties is the developer and Ronald Lu & Partners of Hong Kong also worked on the design. A five-floor luxury mall is at the center of the project, above the new and existing tracks. A landscaped roof deck will allow local residents and office workers to find respite in the minicity, and it is surrounded by high-end coffee shops, boutiques, and restaurants. Eight 40-floor towers to the southeast of the hub are slated for residences, with luxury townhouses and midrise buildings on nearby blocks.
Dusit Central Park; Bangkok
Expected completion in 2023
The Dusit Thani Bangkok was one of the oldest luxury hotels in the city when it closed in early 2019. Built in 1970, it was a landmark of modern architecture. Now, the property is being redeveloped to include residences, office space, and retail, as well as a five-star hotel. The plan calls for a 69-story luxury residential tower with views of the city’s Lumpini Park, a 45-story office tower, a six-level mall, and a contemporary take on the 39-floor Dusit Thani Hotel. Vimarn Suriya Co., a joint venture between Dusit Thani Public and Central Pattana Public,
Newhall Ranch/Valencia; Santa Clarita Valley, California
First phase expected to be completed in 2020
More than 20,000 homes are planned for the community at Newhall Ranch/Valencia. Developed by FivePoint, the project broke ground in 2017. It’s set to be one of the nation’s most environmentally sustainable master-planned communities, with more than 10,000 acres of preserved nature area and a commitment to reducing or mitigating greenhouse gas emissions to zero. The preserved land means more than 30 miles of walking trails, plus 24 parks and several golf courses. Shopping and entertainment will be found at Westfield Valencia Town Center and Patios.
Mission Rock; San Francisco
Expected to be completed in 2025
The San Francisco Giants baseball team is getting into the real estate game. In partnership with renowned developer Tishman Speyer and the Port of San Francisco, the team is behind a 28-acre project that will replace a parking lot on the water. Expected to start construction in 2020, the development will bring 1,500 new rental homes to San Francisco. Eight acres of public park space are also planned, plus shopping and dining options, a brewery, and 1.4 million square feet of office and commercial space. Architecture firms like Chicago’s Studio Gand and Henning Larsen of Denmark have signed on to design residential and office spaces, and the landscape architecture firm SCAPE is in charge of the green spaces, including the five-acre China Basin Park.
This story first appeared in Mansion Global magazine, published on March 14th, 2020.