By Andy Sambidge
Three private companies come forward with plans to transform Al Fateh Corniche
Bids of up to BD37.7bn ($100m) have been submitted to give one of Bahrain's most popular seafronts a major facelift.
According to Bahrain Press Agency, three private companies have come forward with proposals for the Al Fateh Corniche.
It said the biggest bid of BD37.7m has come from New Investment Company, followed by Fortune Promoseven (BD36m) and Jenan Properties (BD11.4m).
Under new plans, the investor will build a new walkway and install playground facilities and create recreational and family areas as well as restaurants and coffee shops as part of the second phase of the corniche's 153,430 sq m area facelift.
Work to clear up the coastline along the corniche is expected to begin early next year, BNA said, without saying when the winning bidder would be announced.
"Developing the corniche has been delayed for long due to various reasons and we have decided to offer the place to investors to help speed up the facelift process," said Municipalities and Urban Planning Affairs Minister Dr Juma Al Ka'abi.
"It is a change of plan from the original idea to have half developed by us and the other half by investors - now the winning bidder will have to cover both private and public facilities, rather than just take parts of the corniche for business," added Al Ka'abi.
Refurbishment work has previously been delayed by a shortage of funds and because the deeds for the corniche's 1km coastline were not registered with the ministry.
However, the Royal Court has transferred the deed under the ministry and a time frame for the project has been set.
The area is part of a 4km public beach project and includes a 3km coastline from near Isa Cultural Centre to the Prince Khalifa Bridge.
Al Ka'abi said the latest phase of the project would see jetties being built at either end of the corniche.For all the latest travel 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.