Saturday, 19 January 2008

Dubai:Limitless begins work on $11b Arabian Canal project

Dubai: Real estate developer Limitless, part of the Dubai World conglomerate, has started work on its ambitious 75-kilometre Arabian Canal project.

The waterway will flow inland from Nakheel's Dubai Waterfront development in the Jebel Ali area to a point near the Palm Jumeirah man-made island.

Up to 150 metres wide and six metres deep, the $11 billion canal will support billions of dollars of real estate and leisure projects that will be constructed on both sides of the water.

Describing the Arabian Canal as "the largest and most complex civil engineering project ever undertaken in the Middle East," Limitless said the preliminary work will be completed in three months.


The project is expected to be completed in three years.

Limitless is also planning its biggest mixed-use development as part of the Arabian Canal project.

The $50 billion waterfront development will cover 20,000 hectares and stretch 33 kilometres along the inland section of the waterway, east of the upcoming Al Maktoum International Airport in Jebel Ali.

Chief executive officer Saeed Ahmad Saeed said the development has not been launched for sale yet even though some companies are reportedly saying that they have been appointed sales agents by Limitless.

"Limitless has not authorised anyone to act on its behalf in the marketing or sales of the Arabian Canal project.

"Limitless will make an official announcement when the project is ready to be released for sale," he said in a statement.

Company spokeswoman Rebecca Rees told Gulf News that work on the real estate project will start towards the end of this year.

The entire plan will be developed in phases over the next 15 years.


It includes marinas, residential communities and business centres serving about one million people.

The preliminary work under way does not involve digging of the canal, Rees said, adding that "actual digging will start in about three months from now."

Apart from the Arabian Canal, Dubai Waterfront and the international airport that could become the world's largest aviation facility, several other mega projects are under way in the Jebel Ali area.

More than 10 kilometres of the canal will pass through the Dubai Industrial City, which is being developed as a manufacturing hub in Jebel Ali, close to the Dubai-Abu Dhabi border.

Dubai Industrial City chief executive officer Rashid Al Ansari said recently that plans for commercial and residential buildings along the canal have not been completed yet.