Monday, October 23, 2006

Construction of Palm Deira started

Palm Deira will be a fullyfledged district of Dubai with schools and hospitals, as well as villas and accommodation for the lower end of the market, a Nakheel official has said. Construction started yesterday after months of reclamation and sand filling.

Full details will be announced before the end of the year and selling of the first batch of the reclaimed land will begin by mid-2007, he said. “Palm Jumeriah is focused on residential [areas] and resorts, but if you look at Palm Deira, it needs amenities such as schools, universities and hospitals. It needs to work as a city for it to be successful. And it will be the final chance for buyers to invest in a development with a seaview.” Announced in November 2004, the project was quickly sold with 40 per cent of the first phase being also snapped up. But there was also speculation whether investor fatigue in Dubai’s mega projects had taken its toll.

“Right now we have reclaimed over 13 per cent of the project, and we intend to deliver this project that His Highness [Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, VicePresident and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai] promised. “Very soon people will be able to start construction. We are making land available closer to the Deira side so that investors can start construction. We have seen tremendous interest in residential and hospitality sectors, but I see tremendous scope in commercial space as well.” The Palm will be 18 kilometres long by 9km wide and will feature 41 fronds.

Nakheel is in talks the Road and Transportation Authority to link it with the Metro. “Nakheel is also working on water taxis that will link all its island projects, such as The World, to this project. There will be marine transportation hubs as well.” While Al Sulayem was careful to explain that the project focuses on the high end of the market, similar to other Palm projects, he added that there will be opportunities for investors at the lower end too.

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