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Sat 29 May 2004 04:00 AM

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Six main contractors to divide up the JBR millions

Excavations at the 1.7 km stretch of Jumeirah Beach Residence completed for its 40 towers

Five of the six main contractors have been selected to develop six of Jumeirah Beach Residence’s seven sectors.

The contract awards add up to the major chunk of a cool Dhs5.2 billion that is being spent to build the development. It may be the largest single batch of contracts to be awarded since the new phase of growth began in Dubai.

“Sector 5 is still in the negotiating stage and we expect the same to be finalised in a couple of week’s time,” says Hashim Al Dabal, CEO of Estithmaar Realty, developer of Jumeirah Beach Residence.

The waterfront development is seen as the third largest on-going real estate project after those by Nakheel and Emaar Properties. It will occupy some 1.7 km of the last beachfront within Jumeirah.

Arab Technical Construction Company (Arabtec) has picked up two of the sectors (Sector 1 and 3) and Saleh Construction (Sector 2), Al Habtoor Engineering (Sector 4), Al Shafar General Contracting Co. (Sector 6) and Dubai Civil Engineering (Sector 7) have each picked up one.

Al Dabal said the main contractors were selected through a detailed evaluation process. “The Jumeirah Beach Residence project is very high-profile and we wanted to ensure that we got the very best people to execute it. In this way, we can ensure top quality. The contractors that have been finally selected are all top of their class with a tremendous track record of executing many of the world-class projects that dot the city of Dubai,” Al Dabal said.

Marketmen say that it is probably the single largest batch of contracts to come out of the Gulf in recent times. The awards are expected to give further boost to the ongoing construction boom. “We are onto an indeed very busy phase of development. Thousands of workers are being mobilised to bring up Jumeirah’s last beachfront development offering a resort lifestyle,” says Al Dabal.

“We have so far been busy with preparing the ground for the start of building the towers that will soon begin to rise off the ground. I am extremely pleased that the team at Jumeirah Beach Residence has again come through with the selection of contractors for six of the sectors,” Al Dabal added. The JBR team he referred to was also behind the development of Dubai Internet City and the Dubai Media City projects.

Al Dabal said that the main construction work on seven sectors on the vast property development is likely to start almost simultaneously and soon. So far the project has concentrated on site preparation and mobilisation and some piling work.

Thirty-six residential towers and four hotel properties are to built. The four hotels are in design process and that at the site, excavation has been completed. “We are committed to completing this quality development on time and we will,” he added.

The residential, commercial, entertainment and retail development is being built at a cost of Dhs5.2 billion and will cover a gross floor area of more than 2.2 million m2. The development’s project manager is Mace International.

Appointment of the main contractors has impacted on the financial sector too. Contractors have successfully turned to banks to support the building of the large projects.

Dubai Islamic Bank has signed an agreement with Al Habtoor Engineering on providing facilities to cover the financial demands for Sector 4. This sector will comprise eight residential towers some reaching 54 floors in height.

Earlier, Mashreqbank came forward to provide the UAE’s single largest financing for a construction project. It has agreed to support Arabtec’s contract valued at Dhs1.6 billion for Jumeirah Beach Residence. The facilities will finance the main contractor for the construction of Sector 1, comprising six residential towers, and Sector 3 for a further seven residential towers, all offering apartments ranging from studios to penthouses on a freehold basis.

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