Sunday, April 14, 2024

Jim Ogul on world’s fairs: Astana ’17 hires Hill International; expects 5 M visits

Astana anticipates 5 million attendance for 2017 expo; Dubai 2020 acquires graphic identity and selects theme pavilion designers; Antalya 2016  prepares to open

by James Ogul, IPM World’s Fair editor

James Ogul
James Ogul

With two world’s fairs currently in development, a lot is going on.  Astana Expo 2017 (Kazakhstan) having the theme “Future Energy,” is a little over a year away and 75 countries have signed up to participate, although the US is not among them.  Hill International was recently signed as a contractor to provide project management services for the Expo.  Astana ’17 organizers project attendance of 5 million which would be the largest audience in history in that region.

Image at top: Her Excellency Reem Ebrahim Al Hashimy, Minister of State for International Cooperation and Director General Dubai Expo 2020

Meanwhile, in Dubai, UAE, Bureau International des Exhibitions (BIE) Secretary General Vincente Loscertales  recently visited the Dubai Expo 2020 offices for a project update. (The BIE is a Paris-based entity that oversees and registers world’s fairs.)

Switzerland signs up for Dubai 2020

As Dubai Expo 2020 is moving along,  Switzerland signaled its national participation this week making it one of the first to accept the official invitation. No decision on US participation has yet been made; however, the US has been officially invited: US Vice President Joseph Biden was given an invitation by HE Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Vice President and Prime Minister of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), and Emir of Dubai.

Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) just signed a $140 million contract to build three substations and cabling to provide electric power for the Dubai site, and Expo staff have moved into a new facility out on the future expo grounds.

Tales from the Expo: Jim Ogul looks at the history of US participation in world’s fairs from the 1980s to now
In-depth look at preparations for Dubai 2020
Why the UAE matters: Editorial by InPark editor in chief Martin Palicki
A great time for the industry: Electrosonic’s Paul Kent talks about global entertainment markets
George Walker: behind the scenes at Farah Leisure, building a new ride for Ferrari World


Design & graphic identity for Dubai 2020

A logo for Dubai Expo 2020 has been selected.  The logo is based on an ancient ring recently unearthed in the UAE at an archaeological site. Several architectural firms won competitions to design major theme pavilions for the Expo: Foster + Partners, BIG – Bjarke Ingels Group and Grimshaw Architects.

Antalya ’16 set to open April 23

Horticultural expos are also sanctioned by the BIE, which translates to participation on the national level and can result in something very like a world’s fair. The Antalya Expo 2016 flower expo will open in Turkey in just over a week.  It will operate from 23 April 2016 to 30 October 2016. The exposition’s philosophy is “A Green Life for Future Generations,” and the theme is “Flowers and Children.”

Antalya will host national- as well as international-scale conferences, panels, meetings and seminars, while having numerous cultural and artistic activities. The Expo aims to have the highest international audience in the history of horticultural expositions, with projected attendance of some 8 million, including domestic and foreign.

Triennale di Milano runs through Sept 12

Finally, another BIE-overseen event is the 21st edition of the Triennale di Milano International Exhibition, underway after a 20-year lapse and in the wake of the successful and recently ended Expo Milano 2015.  The XXI Triennale is entitled “21st Century. Design After Design” and will be open through 12 September 2016, spreading a huge, multifaceted program of exhibitions, events and festivals across Milan in different venues including a portion of the Milan Expo 2015 site.

Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin
Judith Rubin ([email protected]) is a leading journalist, content marketing specialist and connector in the international attractions industry. She reports on design and technical design, production and project management, industry trends and company culture. From 2005-2020 she ran communications and publications for the Themed Entertainment Association (TEA). In 2013, she was honored with the TEA Service Award. She was development director of IMERSA and publicist for the Large Format Cinema Association, and has contributed to the publications of PLASA, IAAPA and the International Planetarium Society. Judith joined World’s Fair magazine in 1987, which introduced her to the attractions industry. She joined InPark in 2010. Judith earned a BFA from Pratt Institute. She has lived in Detroit, New York, Oakland, and now Saint Louis, where she is active in the local arts community.

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