Formula One gets a theme park

Formula One Administration has announced a deal with Dubai's Union Properties for the establishment of a F1-theme park in Dubai. The plan is for Formula One World to be located at the MotorCity in Dubai. The $360m development will feature state-of-the-art fun and entertainment facilities for all ages. There will be a hotel and conference centre.

Construction will begin in 2006 and the park will be completed in 2008 and it is logical to assume that soon afterwards Dubai will make a bid for a Grand Prix, presumably when the current deal with Bahrain comes to an end. The first Bahrain race was in 2004 and if there is a five-year deal, which is the norm, the contract will be up for grabs in 2009.

Union Properties, a development company run by Anis Al Jallaf, a major player in finance in Dubai and chief executive of the Emirates Bank, was the company behind the construction of the Dubai Autodrome, an impressive race track which was unveiled in 2004. That project had the support of the Dubai royal family, notably the Crown Prince Sheik Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

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