Municipality seeks private money to help build parks

Investments and Privatisation Section formed within Contracts and Purchasing Department

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By  Eudore Chand Published  April 24, 2004

Dubai Municipality is pioneering the involvement of the private sector in the construction and provision of facilities in the emirate’s parks. The civic body recently formed a new Investments and Privatisation Section under the contracts and purchasing department. “The purpose of this section is to get the private and government sectors to work together for the growth and development of Dubai. We, therefore, welcome investors’ ideas in line with our vision for future growth and development,” said Essa Al Maidour, director of contracts and purchasing department at Dubai Municipality. A database had been created for potential investors who would be notified on a regular basis about all new projects undertaken by Dubai Municipality. “We had, in the past, participation from the private sector in setting up projects like the Dhs290 million waste treatment plant, projects within the community parks, web portals, GIS services, and multi-story car parks,” he noted. The civic body is now urging private investors to come up with Dhs700 million worth of innovative investment ideas for Zabeel Park, which it aims to establish as the Middle East’s largest technology theme park. Groundwork is currently underway at the open space between Dubai World Trade Centre and Al Karama. The municipal investment for the park is over Dhs300 million while the overall investment, including that from the private sector, will exceed Dhs1 billion, Al Maidour told a meeting of potential investors to brief them on the available investment opportunities in the park. Explaining the mechanism for investing in the project, Saleh Salem Al Qaiwani, head of investments and privatisation section, said an application form has been placed at the Dubai Municipality website ( ) from 17th April. “Investors can send completed form with project description, required land area and detailed project presentation to the department before 9th May 2004,” he said. Dubai Municipality has awarded a few projects such as the Dhs100 million Star Gate, an edutainment facility. Another private company, at a cost of Dhs25 million, has undertaken the gym at the Sports Club House. Zabeel Park, which has a `high technology' theme, is expected to host activities of future Dubai shopping festivals. Total area of the park is some 51 hectares and consists of three separate plots. Around the external perimeters of all three areas, there would be jogging tracks with both soft and hard landscaping. The larger area, approximately 29 hectares, contains four major elements of the project such as the Sports Club, Panoramic Tower, and Imax Theatre, and would be accessible from four gatehouses. Another major feature is an amphitheatre created in 8-metre high earth mounds, which will contain terraced seating. The medium-sized area of 19.82 hectares would contain facilities for a number of activities with the highlight being a boating lake with a lakeside restaurant. A feature of the lake will be cascades and a 25-metre high geyser. Other facilities are a BMX circuit, mini golf and skateboarding park, assault course and adventure playground. The smaller area, spanning some 2.29 hectares, is constructed in the form of a low angle amphitheatre to be used for general purposes. Throughout the park, there would be toilet facilities and refreshment kiosks, and the parks would be equipped with public address systems and closed circuit televisions. A Technology Zone at the park will comprise interactive displays, an electronic 'Space Maze', a sports area including basketball and tennis courts and a clubhouse, a 'Barcode Garden', which includes hi-tech displays and water features, an Alternative Energy Zone featuring displays of solar, wind, geo-thermal and tidal po

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