August 31, 2015

Dubai developer Deyaar launches Afnan, first phase of Midtown project

Deyaar Development has announced the launch of the first phase of its Midtown master development in Dubai’s International Media Production Zone (IMPZ).

The company said that sales for the Afnan district would begin this month. It will contain seven residential buildings ranging in size from 7- to 17-storey blocks. The buildings will contain 132 studio apartments, 374 one-bed, 143 two-bed and 10 three-bed apartments. These will range in size from 40 to 189 square metres and will be marketed at middle-income families.

Deyaar said that a tendering process to appoint a main contractor had started and that construction will begin on site by the end of this year. The district is due for completion by September 2018.

Afnan is the first part of the Midtown development – a masterplanned scheme containing a built-up area of 5 million square feet on 1.2 million sq ft of land – launched at last year’s Cityscape Global event. It will be developed in several overlapping phases during the next five years.

Deyaar’s chief executive, Saeed Al Qatami, said that he expected 90 per cent of the entire project, which contains 27 different towers, to be complete by the end of 2020. It has been broken up into six districts. Five of these will be residential and contain a total of 2,500 apartments. The other will be a hospitality district. There will also be a retail promenade running for 1 kilometre through the site, which will mainly offer community retail and food and beverage units.

Deyaar intends to retain 50 per cent of the entire built stock at Midtown for leasing, and will sell the rest to investors. The construction, land acquisition and infrastructure costs for the entire project have been put at about Dh2.5 billion – it has a development value of Dh3.5bn.

Mr Al Qatami said financing would be phased alongside the development of each district, but he anticipates that Deyaar will fund 50 per cent to 60 per cent of its leased portfolio through bank debt.

Prices for the Afnaan district will be released next week, and Mr Al Qatimi said that they would be set at a level that would be affordable for mid-income clients.

“As Dubai pushes forward full-throttle with its growth plans, the city’s need-gap is for communities that appeal to families with young children,” said Mr Al Qatimi. “We hope Midtown is the first of many such developments that will fill this gap in the long term.”

Hyder has been appointed as lead consultant for the project and U+A Architects as designer.

According to property consultancy Asteco’s second quarter property report for Dubai, the IMPZ district was the fastest-growing neighbourhood in Dubai for rents – up by 13 per cent on the same period a year earlier.

However, sale prices dropped by 3 per cent in the same period, and stand at between Dh700 and Dh1,050 per square foot for a studio apartment.

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