The global financial crisis has derailed construction all over the world — even in the oil-rich United Arab Emirates. But certain megaprojects continue to march ahead, though with tighter budgets, more pragmatic goals, and less ambitious schedules. One such project is Masdar City, in Abu Dhabi. In 2007, the government-owned Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company chose a consortium led by London-based Foster + Partners to design the master plan for the 2.3-square-mile development it touted as the world’s first zero-carbon city. Originally slated for completion by 2016, plans for Masdar included housing, cultural institutions, educational and research facilities, and space for tenants focused on the development of advanced energy technologies. The developers envisioned that the city, located about 20 miles from central Abu Dhabi, would eventually have a daytime population of 90,000 people.