Tuesday, October 07, 2008

$260 billion in new cities from the desert

A Cityscape Dubai Release

Jarallah M. Al Amra (right), General Manager Projects for Sumou Holdings, and Rohan Marwaha, Managing Director of Cityscape, at today’s sponsorship signing ceremony.
Cityscape Saudi Arabia announced for sleeping giant of
Arabian Gulf property development industry

More than 285 civil construction projects worth in excess of $260 billion are currently underway or in design in Saudi Arabia – the sleeping giant of the Arabian Gulf real estate market - according to the latest analysis.

Details of the continuing surge in the kingdom’s civil construction market were revealed today at Cityscape Dubai where the latest addition to the world’s largest international business to business property development brand was announced – Cityscape Saudi Arabia.

“The Cityscape portfolio now encompasses most of the world with ten separate events,” said Rohan Marwaha, Managing Director of Cityscape. “Cityscape Saudi Arabia is a natural addition. With an indigenous and growing population of 19 million and organic growth of its own, Saudi Arabia is not as exposed to potential downturns as other Arabian Gulf states and is less reliant on overseas investment.

“Saudi Arabia’s wealth as a nation also places it in a better position than many to weather the challenging international financial uncertainties. Investment in real estate is at an earlier stage in the cycle and has not matured to the same extent as other regional countries.”

Saudi Arabia’s drive to become one of the top ten globally competitive investment destinations and the development of complete, major new cities in the kingdom are further reasons to introduce Cityscape Saudi Arabia, which will be held from 14-16 June 2009 at the Jeddah International Exhibition Centre.

The Proleads database of active civil projects under construction or in design in dramatically illustrates the extent of the continuing boom in Saudi Arabia’s property development industry with the top ten alone valued at over $200 billion. For the most part, these projects are massive, entirely new cities being created where there was once only desert (see table for details).

The announcement of Cityscape Saudi Arabia was made at a joint press conference today on the sidelines of Cityscape Dubai, taking place until 9 October 2008 at the Dubai International Exhibition and Convention Centre, by Marwaha along with Sumou Holding Company, associate sponsors of the Jeddah event. The announcement of Saudi Arabia’s first real estate investment trust was also made at the press conference.

Cityscape Dubai is the flagship event of a now internationally recognised brand developed in Dubai. “A key strength is the access Cityscape events have to some of the wealthiest and most liquid property investors in the world," said Marwaha. This strength led to the introduction of Cityscape Asia, in Singapore, Cityscape Abu Dhabi and Cityscape China in Shanghai, all of which are now approaching their third year.
The international reach of Cityscape achieved a new level in September with the inaugural Cityscape USA event in New York. The second Cityscape Latin America will follow hot on the heels of Dubai with a show in Sao Paolo in November and the second outing for Cityscape India takes place in Mumbai this December.

"But the growth of Cityscape doesn't stop there," Marwaha added. "We are not only launching the new show in Saudi Arabia, we are also opening in Cityscape Russia in Moscow next June and Cityscape South Korea next September.

"It emphasises that while the world may change we at Cityscape remain intent on a strategy of showcasing emerging real estate market opportunities to an international audience wherever they may be."

Top Ten Saudi Civil Projects

The following are the top ten civil construction projects in Saudi Arabia under construction or in design, according to the database of Proleads (www.projectsandleads.com).

1. King Abdullah Economic City - $93 billion

Construction is underway by Emaar Economic City Company of a city along the Red Sea between Jeddah and Rabigh including a seaport, and industrial, financial, resorts, residential and educational zones.

2. Prince Abdulaziz Bin Mousaed Economic City - $53 billion

Work is underway at Hail on a city to include a logistics centre, airport, an agricultural and entertainment zones, a mining city, a petrochemical zone, a business centre, an educational zone and a residential area. The project is expected to be completed by 2025

3. Jizan Economic City - $30 billion

Construction has begun on this city in southern Saudi Arabia close to the Yemen border and will include a port, aluminium smelter, steel and copper processing, an oil refinery, fish processing and other industries; a business district, residential areas, marina, education and hospitality facilities.

4. Jeddah Project Mile High Tower - $10 billion

The Kingdom Holding Company is designing a 1600 metre skyscraper to form part of the Jeddah project, north of the city.

5. Shamieh Project – $9.3 billion

This Makkah project is in design to include residential apartments, commercial centres, hotels, schools, mosques, hospitals and related facilities, car parks and transport corridors to carry pilgrims. The development is located north of the Haram mosque in Makkah.

6. Medina Knowledge Economic City $7 billion

This project is under construction for Taiba Technological and Economic Information Centre, an interactive museum on Prophet Mohammed’s (PBUH) life, a centre for studies of Islamic civilisation and a centre for medical studies, biosciences and integrated medical services. It includes hotels and housing accommodating 200,000 people.

7. Al Zahira City $4 billion

Design for this development on Palestine Road east Jeddah includes 20,000 housing units and 150,000 square metres of surrounding gardens.

8. Jabal Omar $3.3 billion

This Makkah project is in design for 39 buildings including residential towers, offices tower, commercial centre and five-star hotels. The project will have 4,500 shops, 3,000 showrooms. The residential area is planned for 34,500 people, open prayer space for 85,000 worshipers and prayer places in each tower with a capacity of more of the 200,000 thousand worshipers.

9. Injaz $3 billion

This mixed use Dammam project is being designed on 3.3 million square metres of land on the Arabian Gulf.

10. Riyadh Marriland Leisure Park $3 billion

This project is in design to include an animal world, equestrian centre, family entertainment, a scientific and historical museum, an ecological resort, golf course, retail park, a high tech park, a nature reserve, hunting zone, exhibition centre, diplomat area, a man made lagoon, hotels and media village.

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