Just one week later and one of the region’s leading property developers, UAE based Damac Properties, formally unveiled its own $120 million 35 storey contribution to the mega project.
The Abdali Boulevard will be the first above ground, visible sign of the Abdali project’s gradual progress since the scheme got underway back in 2002. Until now, essential underground infrastructure work has been carried out but construction can begin apace on what Sheikh Baha’a Rafik Hariri, the Chairman of Abdali Investment and Development, described as the entire Abdali project’s ‘beating heart’.
The boulevard will run from east to west in the very centre of the development and will offer over 240 retail outlets, more than 200 apartments up to 7,100 square feet in size, 270,000 square feet of office space as well as a variety of restaurants, fitness facilities and piazzas.
But the boulevard is just one element of the large-scale project being put together by Abdali Investment and Development, a partnership between Mawared, a government owned investment corporation, and Oger Jordan, a subsidiary of Saudi Oger, an international construction conglomerate.
The Abdali project incorporates six other separate sectors including a graduate campus for the American University of Jordan, which will occupy a sizeable chunk of the development, a Central Market Place mostly dedicated to retail activities and ten towers, with a variety of uses, including the landmark Abdali Business Tower.
One such tower, The Heights, to be located at the main gate of the Abdali development, will be built by Damac Properties. The construction will consist of 35 storeys and will comprise a mixture of one, two and three bedroom apartments, as well as penthouses.
Damac sees a lot of potential in the Jordanian market and plans to offer further developments in the course of time, with Peter Riddoch, the company’s Chief Executive, saying, ‘Our initiative is part of a broader scheme that is devised for Jordan, as we plan to introduce a number of very exciting projects within prime locations.’
The company has recently launched a major expansion into several new markets, including elsewhere in the Levant. At the end of June, Damac announced La Residence by Ivana Trump, a $150 million 27 storey residential venture in the centre of Beirut; the subsequent sustained military attack on Lebanon by Israel will no doubt put a severe strain on the project, but Damac remains bullish about its prospects. At the start of June, the company had also revealed a $400 million project in Doha, Qatar and an ambitious $3.5 billion mixed use development in Tianjin, China.
Damac is certainly keen for its newly launched Jordanian venture to get off to an encouraging start, as it is offering the first 25 purchasers of three bedroom apartments in The Heights a free 2007 Jaguar X type as an extra inducement.
The Abdali project is scheduled to take another three years to complete and it will then be hoped, not only by Abdali Investment and Development but also by the Jordanian government, that the area will become a vibrant, thriving centre of investment and commercial activity.
Recent figures, highlighted in the Jordan Times, show that real estate sales in Jordan in the first half of the year totalled $3.2 billion, a massive increase of 60 per cent on the same period last year. It would seem then that property developers can look to enter large-scale Jordanian projects like Abdali with a good deal of confidence.
Wednesday, July 19- 2006 @ 15:16 UAE local time (GMT+4) Replication or redistribution in whole or in part is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Mediaquest FZ LLC.