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Plans for industrial base progressing on target

Dubai Industrial City chief Rashed Al Ansari sheds some much needed light on the progress and plans of the development that is fermenting Dubai as an industrial hub.

SUCCESS: Rashed Al Ansari sees demand for Dubai Industrial City space spurring growth.
SUCCESS: Rashed Al Ansari sees demand for Dubai Industrial City space spurring growth.

Dubai Industrial City chief Rashed Al Ansari sheds some much needed light on the progress and plans of the development that is fermenting Dubai as an industrial hub.

How far has Dubai Industrial City progressed?

Construction work on the project is in full swing.

In the last year, we have launched four office buildings, as well as 140,000m2 of warehouses in addition to the Dubai Industrial Academy, which is the first vocational industrial training academy in the UAE. It offers theoretical and practical hands-on training in eight different industrial sectors, serving the entire region.

We have contracted Wade Adams to deliver Phase 1 with a contract worth US $210 million (AED770 million). Phase 1 included a 10km road that has been completed and is now serving the warehousing facilities and we are going to have secondary and tertiary roads joining this main spinal road.

We also have seven labour cities, which are under construction.

Phase 2 will be expedited due to the increased demand on the land in Dubai Industrial City, so instead of starting in 2009, we are starting in 2008.

So that means contracts for Phase 2 will be put out to tender?

Yes, a tender for Phase 2 infrastructure work will be floated in the second quarter of this year. It is very similar to Phase 1. We haven't prequalified anyone as yet as we're still in the final design stage.

It will run from Emirates Road to the Outer Bypass road. It has been designed in such a way that it can be increased to four lanes on each side if the need arises.

With such vast spaces, have you considered converting some of the land into exhibition areas?

Yes, you'll be hearing about this in due course.

Besides infrastructure work, are there any other jobs going at the moment? Is there a Phase 3?

We are launching a new set of four buildings in 2008, which will be next to the existing four buildings, doubling the amount of office space in the development.

We have two downtown areas; because of the sheer size of the city, you have to have the living environment there for the investors and for the staff that work there. You have to have residential units, offices, schools, universities, hospitals and public services, including fire stations and things like that, so I guess this is what you could call Phase 3.

Have you contracted anyone to build this part of the project?

We have sold 85% of the commercial area to third party investors, so they'll do their own constructing in accordance with our regulations. We're keeping the remaining components for the development of iconic towers at a later stage, which are still on the drawing board.

Is the development going to link-up with Dubai Metro, and will you have your own light rail system within the city?

We're in talks with the RTA to come up with a suitable plan to link-up with Dubai Metro. We also have plans for a light rail system within the development.

Do you have a set of environmentally friendly guidelines for third party investors?

Absolutely. We are implementing the best environmentally friendly methods in everything we do in Dubai Industrial City. Third party investors will have to abide by all our regulations whether it be leasing out land or buying it.

Do you think there will be enough demand for all this space?

We have a goal of developing and nurturing a strong and growing industrial base in Dubai and we are right on target. The launch of our various projects was met with great success and we see demand spurring our growth for the future.

There are more than 430 factories, which are going to be setting up, that we've already contracted with.

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