Dubai's RTA awards contract for $544m canal project

Joint venture between Parsons and Halcrow selected to oversee construction of project
Dubai's RTA awards contract for $544m canal project
An artists impression of Business Bay extension project.
By Beatrice Thomas
Thu 27 Mar 2014 10:32 AM

Plans for the AED2bn ($544m) Dubai Canal have taken a step forward with a joint venture between Parsons and Halcrow selected to oversee construction of the project.

Parsons said in a statement on Wednesday that after being awarded the design tender in 2006, the new scope of work in the construction supervision contract included elevating three major roads in Dubai, relocating utilities, and constructing the 2.8km-long canal.

The US firm said the project was split into three construction contracts, with Parsons responsible for construction supervision for the first two packages related to roads and bridges while Halcrow will be responsible for the third package for canal excavation and marine works.

Financial details of the contract were not disclosed.

The first phase of the mammoth project includes elevating Sheikh Zayed Road, which runs six lanes in each direction, and relocating utilities using micro tunnelling to facilitate the canal construction.

“Parsons is honoured to have been chosen for this landmark project in Dubai,” said Guy Mehula, Parsons MEA president.

“Once completed, the Dubai Water Canal Project will add 6km to the Dubai waterfront and will attract many visitors.”

The 3km long project will connect the already extended creek from the Business Bay area all the way to Jumeirah beach, cutting through Sheikh Zayed Road, Safa Park, Al Wasl Road and Jumeirah Beach Road.

The bridge on Sheikh Zayed Road will be almost a kilometre long and will raise up to 8.5m, allowing luxury yachts and boats to pass through. As well, a number of marine transport stations, as well as jetties, will dot at various locations along both sides of the creek, enhancing water transport services in the city.

Ranging from 80m to 120m, depending on the locations, the canal will house various shopping, leisure, residential and commercial centres along both sides as well as four world class hotels, including a crescent-shaped building and up to 450 restaurants.

Safa Park, which serves as the epicentre of the project, will house a 50,000sqm shopping mall, 6km of beaches and a sprawling 80,000sqm waterfront walkway and leisure area.

The project will also have separate tracks for jogging and cycling and recreational facilities for children.

With a completion date of three years, the development is expected to further boost tourism in Dubai with an estimated footfall of 22m visitors.

In December Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority announced that Turkish construction giants Mapa and Gunal Constructions have been awarded the contract to carry out the project, while Halcrow and Parsons were appointed as consultants.

Work on the canal is being undertaken through three separate tenders, one of which is for a 16-lane bridge on Sheikh Zayed Road. Another tender will be issued for the two six-lane bridges over Al Wasl Road and Jumeirah Beach Road, and the third tender will be to develop the canal.

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