Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council Develops Urban Street Design Manual in Association with Otak International

The Design Manual Supports Abu Dhabi’s Vision to Become a Pedestrian-Friendly, Sustainable City

PORTLAND, Ore. — (BUSINESS WIRE) — March 29, 2010 — Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council (UPC), the agency responsible for Abu Dhabi’s urban environment, has unveiled the Urban Street Design Manual for the Emirate of Abu Dhabi. The manual, developed in association with Otak International, the Abu Dhabi-based arm of Oregon’s award-winning design firm, Otak, Inc., is the design guide for all urban streets in the Emirate.

Otak International was appointed by the UPC in 2009 to provide assistance for research and the subsequent formulation of the Urban Street Design Manual. The key objective of the manual is to address the changing street use priorities and reflect the fundamental principles of the far-reaching “Plan Capital 2030,” which envisions transforming Abu Dhabi into a leading example of a walkable, sustainable Arab city.

The completed manual puts pedestrians first and defines a street design process for enhancing street network connectivity and capacity. It creates a new street typology system and recommends streetscape enhancements, native, drought-tolerant landscaping and “shadeways” that will encourage walking, bicycling and enhanced access to transit. A team of planning experts from the UPC and Otak International worked on the formulation of this manual.

“The Design Manual embraces the concept that streets should be designed to reflect and respond to their local surroundings,” said Colin Hill, Otak International’s Director of Transport. “Its unique matrix classification system can be adapted to any combination of land use and vehicle capacity requirements. It will be a valuable tool for the development, design and construction of truly context sensitive streets.

About Otak International

Otak International has been working in Abu Dhabi since 2005, blending the local expertise of a regional firm with the diverse capabilities of a 29-year-old company. Otak’s project management, design, planning and engineering professionals leverage their experience with award-winning projects to deliver creative, sustainable solutions worldwide. Otak employs experts in architecture, master planning, civil engineering, infrastructure, roadways, bridge design, construction supervision, public works, growth-management planning, GIS, landscape architecture, planning, surveying and mapping, urban design, visualization, water resources, economics and environmental services. Otak International specializes in mixed-use, residential and commercial development; master-planned communities and resorts; infrastructure projects such as roads, bridges and light-rail transit; and construction and project management. For more information please visit www.otak.com.

About Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council

The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council was created by Emiri Decree number 23 of the year 2007 and is the agency responsible for the future of Abu Dhabi’s urban environments, and the expert authority behind the visionary Plan Abu Dhabi 2030 Urban Structure Framework Plan published September 2007. Chaired by His Highness Sheikh Mohamed Bin Zayed Al Nahyan, Crown Prince of Abu Dhabi and Chairman of the Abu Dhabi Executive Council, the Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council defines the shape of the Emirate, ensuring factors such as sustainability, infrastructure capacity, community planning and quality of life, by overseeing development across the city and the Emirate as a whole. The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council ensures best practice in planning for both new and existing urban areas.

The Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council’s primary purpose is to deliver upon the vision of His Highness Sheikh Khalifa bin Zayed Al Nahyan, President of the UAE, Ruler of Abu Dhabi for the continued fulfillment of the grand design envisaged by the late Sheikh Zayed bin Sultan Al Nahyan and the ongoing evolution of Abu Dhabi as a global capital city. By drawing on urban planning expertise locally, throughout the GCC and around the world, the UPC strives to be a global authority on the future of urban planning and design.


Otak, Inc.
Gwynne Berkeley, 503-699-4563
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