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It is Sharjah's turn to make optimum use of its waterfront with a new development that will spread across 36 kilometres of its coastline.
The multibillion dirham Sharjah Waterfront City, being developed by Sharjah Oasis Real Estate Development, will encompass 60 million square feet for residential, commercial and hospitality components. The cost of the first phase of the development is estimated at Dh9.35 billion.
It is to consist of a series of 10 'islands' interconnected by canals and featuring villas, apartments, offices, hotels, water theme park, marine clubs and parks.
The formal announcement of the multiphase development will be at the upcoming Cityscape Global event in Dubai in early September. There had been earlier projects that have sought to tap Sharjah's coastline, but this one is the most ambitious by far.
'Privacy, luxury, status'
''Our objective is to develop Sharjah Waterfront City as the epitome of privacy, luxury and status,'' said Hayssam El Masri, President of the Sharjah Oasis Real Estate Development. ''We believe we can significantly add valuable leisure time to family entertainment.''
The project lays claim to being the largest ever to be mounted in Sharjah. The promoters have set a completion timeline for Phase 1 by Q3-2018. Details regarding the planned selling structure will also be announced at Cityscape.
Sharjah has been gradually opening up its property market to buyers of multiple nationalities, with developments such as the Tilal City making full use of investor appetite for realty assets in the emirate.
Tilal City allowed even non-Arab nationals with UAE residency visas to have ownership in the master-development.
A new wave of developments will also create ample new capacity, especially in the much needed residential space. Recently completed residential towers as well as low-density community projects have seen high take-up rates.
Interestingly, the slowdown witnessed in the Dubai property market has not been mirrored in Sharjah.
The impression among market watchers is that there is still a lot of pent up interest for realty assets in Sharjah, both from within the UAE and from elsewhere in the Gulf.
This is what the Sharjah Waterfront City could be tapping into. The project also lays great emphasis on hospitality-specific ventures.
''This is an incredibly exciting time for us — the project is set to be a tourism landscape as the preferred tourist destination for families,'' said El Masri.
With the launch of this project, there will be two mega developments taking place in the UAE with a water-based theme. Dubai's Nakheel is making headway with creating the Deira Islands.
Get a glimpse of SAIF Zone in Sharjah
Source: Manoj Nair, Associate Editor, gulfnews.com