Things are afoot in Azerbaijan. Big things.
Like the Middle Eastern States, Azerbaijan sits on a wealth of mineral resources, and there are people that want to turn those resources into dreams. The city of dreams. The emerald city almost. The Wizard of Az.
Well, they're going to build some artificial islands, and put some mega-tall sky-scrapers on them if the hype is to be believed.
Here's what the area looks like now.
Well OK. It doesn't look like much right now, but then, much of Dubai was just dirt a generation ago.
Here's how they reckon it will look.
8 Square miles of real estate, split over 40 islands. The viewpoint of this picture is from the top of what they're adventurously calling "Azerbaijan Tower", which is going to be as tall as the Burj Khalifa if you were to stick the Post Office tower on top of it.
When I come across stuff like this, I look for a date. If it was proposed before 2008, I tend to think it's just a castle in the air, and that the global financial meltdown will have changed the economic footing for it. But this is all recent.
When we think of Azerbaijan at all, I suppose it tends to be as something of a backwater. Azerbaijanian people, to the uninformed (like me) are sort of like Arabs, but a bit like Russian peasants or something. Just another anonymous mid-asian former soviet colony that's gone muslim since the collapse of the USSR.
But they've got... High hopes.
This proposal has some high powered backing from China amongst other places, and is symbolic of how global power is shifting from the West to the East. Who knows? It may even get built.
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