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To say that Dubai has found a firm footing as a haven for luxury properties won’t be wrong. But the latest buzz is around the other end of the spectrum – the affordable segment.
International City has been a very popular development among investors and tenants who are looking for affordable housing options amidst a convenient range of facilities and amenities.
Spread over an area of 800 hectares, this city within a city is divided into distinctly themed precincts which feature well-developed infrastructure and tranquil living.
Chandragupta Patil, Projects Manager, homemaker wife Nilam and daughters Swarali and Ritvi have made International City their home for the past eight years. They reside at Trafalgar Executive building, adjacent to retail venue Dragon Mart.
The family feels that there has been an upgrade in their lifestyle as compared to when they were staying in Rashidiya as International City features a mix of residents from different cultures.
Amongst other advantages that the family vouches for are that the area is free from noise pollution and isolated from traffic congestion unlike Deira, Bur Dubai and Al Qusais.
Aside from these, Chandra has this to say, “While the apartments are spacious, the Dragon Mart shopping mall is located in close vicinity, which makes shopping literally a piece of cake.”
Though not centrally located, Chandra reckons that International City is easily accessible from most of the city’s major areas.
Chandra works for a consultancy company. His work primarily covers Al Khawaneej, Al Mizhar, Mirdif, Dubailand, Nad Al Sheba, Dubai Silicon Oasis (DSO) and Al Quoz, among others, and all these places are easily accessible within a duration of 20 minutes from their home, which makes the commute very convenient.
Another convenience factor for the family is that the couple’s elder daughter, Swarali, studies at the Indian International School based in DSO, which is just a ten-minute drive.
Chandra says that with most of the tenants residing in the same apartment for over seven to eight years now, they have become good friends with some of the building tenants and homeowners. Their building has also become a well-known place in the community.
With facilities like a swimming pool, gymnasium, steam bath, sauna, spacious corridors, round-the-clock security and CCTV cameras, it does not come as a surprise that the tenants do not want to move out of their building; although of late, the residents have been having maintenance issues.
Not being allowed to use the multi-purpose hall is also causing a stir amongst the residents.
He adds, “The biggest bugbear is the lack of a park, or recreation or entertainment area which is causing a major void for the families in the area.”
He explains that these and a children’s play area would make the community more child-friendly and health-oriented.
Furthermore, Chandra rues the lack of quality tuition classes for children.
The limited parking spots are also a major concern for residents as the cluster parking area is mostly occupied by commercial vehicles at all times, leaving them with no space at all.
Free from traffic
Free from noise pollution
A department store in the neighbourhood
Modern conveniences like fitness and sports facilities
Dining establishments within the development
Plenty of schools nearby
Lack of parks and play areas
Inefficient building maintenance
Inadequate privacy for families
Lack of classes for children
Limited parking areas
Source: Bandana Jain, Special to Freehold