By Andy Sambidge
TECOM Investments says it is investing over $1bn; construction of 10 buildings already underway
The developers behind the recently announced Dubai Design District have said that it aims to complete phase one by January 2015.
TECOM Investments said construction of 10 buildings were already underway with the company investing AED4bn ($1.08bn) in the first phase of the project.
Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, vice president and prime minister of the UAE and ruler of Dubai, launched the Dubai Design District on Saturday, saying it will be located close to the Business Bay area of Dubai.
The district is expected to become a full service commercial hub for design industry-related organisations, brands, and supporting enterprises within the value chain.
Dubai Design District will offer residential, commercial, retail and hospitality real estate, characterised by distinct public spaces, unique street furniture and shaded walkways.
The development will include a creek side promenade with international and boutique hotels, a pop up shop area, amphitheatre and convention centre.
It is the latest major announcement by Dubai to further develop its reputation as a global tourism and retail hub.
Ahmad Bin Byat, CEO, Dubai Holding, said: "The UAE's resilient and growing retail and tourism sectors, its strong infrastructure and logistic network, and the potential of the MENASA region, have already attracted several of the world's top design and luxury brands to set up their regional headquarters in Dubai.
"To further strengthen Dubai's knowledge-based economy and ensure its sustainability, we must create an environment that would produce and nurture future business leaders and entrepreneurs.
"Dubai Design District aims to provide this environment for the local talent interested in this sector. Furthermore, these talents will be able to draw on the experience of the leading regional and international operators who we are looking to attract to the district.
"Dubai Design District will be a dedicated home to the growing and increasingly popular local designer community who are emerging onto the global stage. We are confident that the district will play an integral role in diversifying Dubai's economy once developed."
Dr Amina Al Rustamani, Group CEO at TECOM Investments, added: "The announcement of Dubai Design District is a landmark moment for TECOM and a natural expansion for the creative industries we have already established. Extensive market research into the design, fashion and luxury industries, coupled with our track record in creating, operating and growing successful, industry-focused business parks in Dubai has led us to create this new district.
"In the same way that we have supported IT companies in Dubai Internet City - the region's first knowledge cluster - and media companies in Dubai Media City, we want to give design and luxury goods companies a platform for growth and an appropriate base for their operations in Dubai."
Al Rustamani added: "Luxury brands like Hermes, apparel brands Nike and Puma, educational institutions focused on the industry like ESMOD, and related media such as Harper's Bazaar are already doing business in some of TECOM's nine free zones and we want to see others join them."For all the latest construction news from the UAE and Gulf countries, follow us on Twitter and Linkedin, like us on Facebook and subscribe to our YouTube page, which is updated daily.