Dubai pearl project is being demolished, images of smoke rising from the scene go viral

The Dubai Pearl, a 22-million-sqft foot mixed-use project, is being demolished. Social media users posted images of smoke rising from the scene Monday morning.

Connected by four 73-story towers as a ‘heavenly palace’, the project consisted of “premium brand residences, world-class hotels and entertainment facilities”.

Some residents said they felt tremors at the demolition site. The National Meteorological Center (NCM) has so far denied reports of an earthquake in the UAE.

Sarah Alansary, who lives in Dubai Marina, felt the tremors. She said, “I lived on the 20th floor, so I felt it strongly. I was sitting on the couch with my mom and it felt like an earthquake, but it only lasted a few seconds. I looked out the window and saw this:

“I didn’t know what was going on, but now I know the building is being demolished.”

Mohammed Anshah, who works at Dubai Media City, felt the chair move for a few seconds. “An entire floor of my colleagues felt it and we all stopped working. We thought it was an earthquake. But when I looked out the window, I saw a cloud of dust rising from the Dubai Pearl site.”

Arfaz Iqbal, another resident of Dubai Media City, also felt the vibrations. “All of a sudden I felt the chair rolling around,” he said. “I looked up at my colleagues and we all started asking each other if they were feeling. Everyone felt it. I immediately called my family in other parts of Dubai, but no one felt anything.”

Nashwa Elleithy, who lives in the Greens, said she felt the ground shake. “The lights didn’t move and I couldn’t hear any sounds from the walls. I witnessed the 1992 earthquake in Egypt, and at that time I heard cracking in the walls, but here I could only feel the whole building shaking. It only lasted a few seconds.”

Social media was abuzz with comments from Dubai residents who said they felt the tremors. A Twitter post asking if anyone else felt the earthquake received multiple responses, with one user saying the quake was “strong.” Another said he felt tremors in the marina area.

The Dubai Pearl, overlooking Palm Jumeirah, was meant to be a “fully integrated and sustainable city,” according to the project’s website. When completed, it could accommodate 30,000 people.

It’s not immediately clear what will happen to the site.

A Canadian-based architectural design and intellectual property licensor has proposed building a moon-shaped resort on the site. Michael Henderson, one of the two entrepreneurs behind the concept, budgeted $5 billion for construction. If sanctions were imposed, Moon Dubai would “welcome at least 10 million visitors a year,” the co-founder of Moon World Resorts told the College Times.

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