Case Studies

Fast out of the starting gate

Meydan City, Dubai, uses IP convergence to create ultimate 21st century horse racing experience.

Meydan City is Dubai’s new iconic sporting, business, and lifestyle destination. The complex includes a world-class grandstand, a 60,000-capacity racecourse, the Dubai Racing Club and Emirates Racing Authority offices, a luxurious five‑star hotel, exquisite fine-dining restaurants, covered car parking for 8600 vehicles, the Meydan Museum and Gallery, and an IMAX Theater.

Aligned with the vision of His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Meydan City aims to create not just the ultimate venue for horse racing, but also an integrated city that is sustainable, environmentally responsible, and capable of positioning Dubai at the center of the competitive global business stage.

To realize these ambitions, the management company Meydan encapsulated a new way of thinking about how major development projects can be transformed through intelligent, converged IP networking.

“Using the network as a platform, our plan was to maximize operational efficiency by converging voice, data, and building management systems,” says Wassim Hamwi, chief information officer for Meydan. “The second step was to look at how this investment could be reused to provide richer, fulfilling experiences for people visiting the city.”

Meydan has created a technology blueprint for delivering 21st century sports and entertainment services. The solution uses Cisco Borderless Networks Architecture, customized to support the Cisco vision of a Connected Stadium.

Implemented as the new foundation for the 2010 Dubai World Cup, this fully converged infrastructure supports data, voice (using 1550 Cisco IP phones and Unified Contact Center Enterprise for helpdesk and ticket sales), video, security, wireless (comprising 3200 Cisco Access Points), building management, and physical security for the grandstand and the Meydan Hotel.

Guests can enjoy free use of unified communications, wireless Internet access, interactive TV, and video on demand services at both the hotel and the grandstand. Each hotel room has two plasma screens and is serviced with the utmost efficiency. Staff use IP phones to report any broken items or faults, and order replacement stock. This data is automatically sent to the hotel management system and can be actioned immediately.

This experience of luxurious efficiency continues at the racecourse, where visitors can enjoy the big race build-up and catch all the action on four channels and over 450 plasma screens. These programs, the first of their kind to be produced in high definition, are simultaneously streamed over the network to TV broadcasters and major sports channels. And, with ubiquitous wireless access, the media and press can dispatch reports with ease, helping ensure the venue receives all the public relations and publicity that it deserves


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