Nakheel signs $270m Dragon Mart 2 with Kele, Unec

100% expansion adds 18 hectares, 4,500 parking spaces, 240 hotel rooms

The total size of the development with phase 2 complete will rise to 34 hectares, complete with a Geant hypermarket and Grand cinemas.
The total size of the development with phase 2 complete will rise to 34 hectares, complete with a Geant hypermarket and Grand cinemas.

Dubai contractors Kele and United Engineering Construction (UNEC) have started construction of the $270m Dragon Mart phase 2 after an official signing and groundbreaking ceremony with Nakheel attended by Construction Week.

The expansion adds 177,000m2 to the retail hub, more than doubling its total area to 335,000m2, and increasing its length to 1,2km. Kele are building a six storey car-park with a 2,000 vehicle capacity as well as 240-bed hotel covering 8,500m2.

“Dragon Mart has gone from strength to strength since it opened in 2004. Now, we are doubling the size of this amazing success story – proof of our commitment to continued delivery of new and existing projects, and of the huge demand from business wanting to be a part of the Dragon Mart phenomenon,” said Ali Rashid Lootah, Nakheel chairman, speaking at Dragon Mart.

Unec are responsible for the construction of the new two-storey mall space, which will host a 10,000m2 Geant hypermarket, a nine-screen 4,000m2 Grand cinema complex, district cooling plant and new retail space with an emphasis on the wholesale of building materials, machinery and spare parts.

The value of the contracts awarded to Kele and Unec is around $163m. The construction of phase 2 is due to be completed in 2013.

“Dragon Mart is already the world’s biggest trading hub for Chinese products outside mainland China. The Phase 2 expansion will provide many more opportunities for retailers, hoteliers and restaurants to prosper at this unique development,” said Lootah.

The new mall building will also have a further 1,750 car-parking spaces on the roof with 800 spaces at ground level, bringing the existing vehicle capacity of 2,500 up to a total of 7,050.

The current Dragon mart was built it 2002 and hosts 4,000 retailers, recieving an average of 52,000 visitors daily, or a footfall of around 19 million a year. The phase 2 retail space has already been 80% let.

The region also has several other projects underway that are also aimed at promoting Chinese trade.

In September 2011, Meraas Holding announced construction of the $544m Phoenix Mart, featuring a five-star hotel, adjacent to the Dragon Mart. It has been claimed that the project will be three times as large as the existing Dragon Mart complex, and comprise 6,000 largely Chinese outlets.

In May 2012, Diyar Al Muharraq signed an agreement with the Chinamex, the Chinese Middle East trade organization also behind the Dragon Mart to develop a similar multi-million dollar complex named ‘Dragon City’ on its reclaimed development off the coast of Bahrain.

Phase 1 of the project involves a 46,000m2 complex to host 100 Chinese companies, due to be delivered in September 2014.


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