Dubai ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid al-Maktoum has approved a new $544m tourism project to be built along Dubai creek.

The development will consist of a floating market, hotels, restaurants, art galleries and shops for Emirati handicrafts.

The project covers a 1.8km plot extending from Al-Fahidi area and is being developed by Meraas Holding.

Sheikh Mohammed issued directives for close coordination among the project’s stakeholders to build the project as a new tourist attraction in Dubai.

“Let us work as one team to transform our city into a cultural hub that attracts creative artists. I want Dubai to remain a melting pot for peace, harmony and love, a vibrant place for all,” he said.

The project is one of several schemes that have been planned on or near the creek. Local Dubai International Real Estate is building a new development located on the banks of Dubai creek in the Port Saeed area of Deira, next to Al-Maktoum Bridge. The development will have 17 main buildings, including a convention centre, two hotels, and eight apartment buildings. Contractors have submitted bids for construction work on the project.

Last year, Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) signed an agreement with Meydan Group and Meraas Holding for the two local developers to build real estate projects on either side of the Dubai Water Canal project.