UAE proposes building Martian city within a century

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The competition heats up? The United Arab Emirates announced on Tuesday its plan to construct a city on Mars and have it completed by 2117, a hundred years from now.

On Tuesday, at the sidelines of the World Government Summit in Dubai, the UAE announced that it was planning to build the first city on Mars by 2117. According to CNBC, UAE engineers presented a concept city at the event about the size of Chicago for guests to explore.

In a statement, Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, ruler of Dubai and vice president of the UAE, sounded confident about the project. “Human ambitions have no limits, and whoever looks into the scientific breakthroughs in the current century believes that human abilities can realize the most important human dream,” Maktoum said.

And despite the grandiose nature of the idea, the 100-year-plan does emphasize some practical steps. “The Mars 2117 Project is a long-term project,” Maktoum explained in the statement, adding that the first order of business would be making space travel appeal to young Emiratis, with special programs in space sciences being set up at universities in the UAE.

Maktoum is the guy that pushed to create the UAE’s space agency, and is leading its effort to fly an unmanned mission to Mars by 2020. It is very clear that his goal is to inspire his country and its youth so that they will aim high in future years. I wish him well, as this is a far better goal for an Islamic nation than sending out suicide bombers to kill innocent people.

I must add that I remain very skeptical about this particular plan. I fully expect us to finally get to Mars in the next century, but whether we will have the ability to build cities there in that time frame remains questionable.



  • Garry

    This is the same Sheik who built Burj Dubai, the world’s tallest building. When it was nearly completed, he announced publicly that he was restructuring the loans for that project, which is the first time any of his creditors heard about it. The Sheik of Abu Dhabi had to bail him out, in return for having the building named after him.

    I wouldn’t take any of his plans all that seriously.

    And yes, I’m still bitter about missing out on the chance to go up to the observation deck when I last went to Dubai, because just before I got there they delayed the scheduled opening (much to my wife’s relief; she doesn’t share my love of heights).

  • D.K. Williams

    And I plan to colonize Mars by 2099. 😂

  • Alex

    Oh no, I hoped future colonized Mars will be free from Islam, a major reason to flee to that planet. Another plan is destroyed.

  • ken anthony

    Sounds to me like they lack ambition. If the first colonists to America were like today’s people we’d still be waiting for Jamestown and Plymouth.

  • wodun

    This particular plan might not work out but the UAE has a lot of money and will be able to buy a lot of space based products and services soon. They could have their own space station in short order or own part of a larger multinational effort very easily.

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