I International Workshop «Dubai Pop-Up, Architecture in a Transient City»



Dubai is a fascinating young city projected to the future. Its skyline offers nowadays a wide panorama of architectural works, from hi-scale landscape interventions to small size projects, designed by the most renowned world-famous  architects such as Rem Koolhaas, Norman Foster, Santiago Calatrava, SOM, Zaha Hadid, Atkins and so forth.

Those projects are radically transforming the urban landscape, attempting to reconnect a built environment today fragmented by the bursting expansion of the recent times.

The participants of the workshop will have the opportunity to visit both recent accomplished buildings and projects under construction, confronting themselves with the local context in a dynamic and stimulating environment.

Students of architecture coming from an international context will work together with local students of the Bachelor in Architecture of Al Ghurair University in Dubai, in order to foster a shared design vision through a collective cultural growth and reciprocal awareness.

The workshop will promote collaboration among international partners, increasing reciprocal cultural exchanges, and will benefit of lectures and contributions by some of the most prominent figures of the international context of architecture and design, based and active in the Gulf region.

The Workshop is promoted by a team of international universities led by the College of Design of Al Ghurair University in Dubai. Other partners are the University of Palermo (Italy), the University of Cagliari (Italy), the University of Valladolid (Spain), the University of Zaragoza (Spain), the University of Burgos (Spain) and the University of Seville (Spain).


The workshop goal is to find appropriate solutions to reconnect the fragments of the city’s fabric, solving the contradictions generated by the current urban sprawl caused by the rapid and uncontrolled recent growth.

Projects proposals should attempt to fill the urban voids, providing suitable functions able to meet the citizens’ nowadays neglected needs. In a city in rapid and constant transformation, project proposals should be flexible, transportable and adjustable, in order to be adapted to different contexts, according to the needs. Therefore, those projects should be conceived as collapsible Pop-Up structures, able to answer to different needs and to deal with diverse context conditions.

Teams of students will design a set of Pop-Up facilities to be situated in a selection of different urban contexts, chosen amongst some of the most stimulating locations of the old-city of Dubai (Deira and Bur Dubai), including its new extensions along the Creek and the new area (currently under development) of the d3 Dubai Design District.


Friday, March 3rd | Ibis Deira Hotel
17:00 Welcome & Reception
17:30-20:00 Tour to Downtown/DIFC/Trade Center
20:00 Opening Cocktail in Deira
Saturday, March 4th | d3
Free Morning
14:00-14:30 Registration
14:30-15:00 Presentation: Coordinators and d3
15:00-16:00 Lecture by George Katodrytis | AUS
16:30-20:00 Tour to Deira/Bur Dubai/Shindagha
Sunday, March 5th | d3
9:00-10:00 Introduction to Workshop Themes
10:00-14:00 Site visit with tutors
14:30-18:00 Workshop
18:00-19:00 Lecture by Gianluca Peluffo | 5+1AA
19:00-20:00 Lecture by Firas Hnoosh | Perkins+Will
Monday, March 6th | d3
9:00-18:00 Workshop
18:00-19:00 Review Work In-Progress
19:00-20:00 Lecture by Janus Rostock | Atkins
Tuesday, March 7th | d3
9:00-18:00 Workshop
18:00-20:00 Mid-Workshop Review
Wednesday, March 8th | d3
9:00-18:00 Workshop
18:00-18:30 Review Work In-Progress
18:30-20:00 Lecture by Tariq Khayya | Zaha Hadid Architects
Thursday, March 9th | d3
9:00-13:00 Workshop
13:00-14:00 Lecture by Dara Towhidi | Foster+Partners
14:30-18:00 Workshop
18:00-19:00 Review Work In-Progress
Friday, March 10th | d3
9:00-11:00 Workshop
11:00-13:30 Final Jury
13:30-14:00 Conclusions
15:00 Visit to “Concrete” in Alserkal Avenue with Iyad Alsaka | OMA
17:00 Visit to Burj Al Arab/Dubai Marina
20:00 Closing Ceremony & Cocktail in Dubai Marina
Wednesday, March 15th – Saturday, March 18th | d3
17:00-20:00 Projects Exhibition at “d3 – Art Dubai 2017
Tuesday, April 4th – Sunday, April 9th | Milan
9:00-20:00 Projects Exhibition “Fuorisalone-Milano Design Week 2017”


Óscar Ares, José Carrillo, Arturo González, Enrique Jerez, Marco Lecis, Javier López, Emanuele Palazzotto, Gianluca Peluffo, Ramón Pico, Francesca Sorcinelli and Sonsoles Vela.


Tiziano Aglieri Rinella (t.rinella@agu.ac.ae|+971529729104) and Rubén García Rubio (r.rubio@agu.ac.ae | +971559257759)


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