December 8, 2023 foasummit0

Dar Group has announced it is rebranding to Sidara. The firm says the new global brand reflects the group’s ambitions and mission of building a healthier, more equitable world, where humanity and nature coexist in harmony. The new brand was unveiled for the first time at COP28 in Dubai.

A family-owned business of around 19,000 people across more than 300 locations, Sidara specialises in infrastructure, architecture, project management and the energy sectors.

“We explore design-level insights for the aviation, healthcare, mobility, data centre and urban hydrogen sectors and chart concrete pathways to zero emissions. It is an apt symbol of our mission to create environments, where humanity and nature harmoniously coexist, elevate how people live, connect communities, and make room for all cultures to shine,” remarked its Chairman and CEO Talal Shair.

The group’s collaborative is home to 17 leading, specialist firms in the built environment, including Dar, Perkins&Will, Currie & Brown, TYLin, and Penspen.

At COP28, the Sidara Collaborative is launching Solutions – a collection of investigations into how to rapidly decarbonise the most challenging sectors in the built environment. Shair has been advocating for pushing forward beyond low-hanging fruit and tackling some of the toughest areas on the path to Net Zero.

“We’re aligning our house of leading brands with this mission – and amplifying our collective strengths through a new global identity. As Sidara, we’re working to develop transformative solutions and pathways towards meaningful, long-term change for all our clients and communities. While this is our first time at COP28 UAE as Sidara, this is a continuation of our advocacy for the world as we would for our own home,” he concluded.

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December 8, 2023 foasummit0

A new residential project – Mercedes-Benz Places – has been announced, following a deal between Binghatti Properties and Mercedes-Benz.

The residential tower will be developed in Downtown Dubai and will offer views of the Burj Khalifa and access to landmarks including the Dubai Mall. According to a statement, the tower will have a height of 341m and will feature 65 storeys.

“We are profoundly excited to be working alongside Mercedes-Benz – a truly iconic name – to develop the first Mercedes-Benz branded luxury residence in the world. Mercedes-Benz Places in Dubai is not merely a real-estate development; it will also place community and mobility at its core, setting a new benchmark for intelligent living,” stated Muhammad BinGhatti, CEO of Binghatti.

Binghatti and Mercedes-Benz have been defining the details on this project for over a year. During this time, the main focus has been on creating a customer-centred approach that places the needs of future residents at the forefront of the experience. The Mercedes-Benz design philosophy revolving around Sensual Purity is a driving force behind the project’s architecture, creating timeless and beautiful spaces in an oasis of serenity and purity. By combining smart home technologies with intelligent mobility solutions, Mercedes-Benz Places Dubai aims to redefine comfort and convenience in a modern living space, said a statement.

Britta Seeger, Member of the Board of Management Mercedes-Benz Group AG, Marketing & Sales added, “With Mercedes-Benz Places in Dubai, we are going beyond automotive to create outstanding brand moments. With their many years of experience in real-estate development, Binghatti is the ideal partner for us. Our aim with our first branded, real estate residential tower is to create new, desirable grounds that inherit our brand’s DNA and give our customers a place to arrive, unwind and come home to.”

The collaboration will commence with a launch event in Dubai on 24 January 2024, where further details about the project will be announced, the statement concluded.

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December 8, 2023 foasummit0

At a satellite meeting at COP28, Dubai Municipality and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (DEWA) signed an agreement to co-operate in a project to generate electricity from biogases extracted from the landfill in Muhaisnah 5.

The MoU is a part of Dubai Municipality’s participation in COP28 as a Strategic Pathway Partner. Representatives from more than 1,000 municipalities and cities were invited to attend COP28.

Dubai Municipality said it is showcasing to a global audience the UAE’s leading model in planning, designing, and building sustainable urban communities of the future.

The signing supports Dubai’s leading sustainability practices and supports the realisation of the UAE Net Zero Strategy 2050. The deal was signed by Saeed Mohammed Al Tayer, MD and CEO of DEWA and Dawood Al Hajri, Director General of Dubai Municipality, within the Green Zone of COP28.

Al Tayer said that DEWA’s aim is to achieve 100% energy production capacity from clean sources by 2050: “Additionally, we actively contribute to the implementation of the Integrated Waste Management Strategy Roadmap 2021-2041, fostering innovation in waste management, recycling, and energy conversion. Furthermore, we are committed to executing groundbreaking, long-term clean projects over the next two decades, providing practical solutions to environmental challenges in line with the specified goals in the government agenda.”

Dawood Al Hajri emphasised that the partnerships Dubai Municipality is building align with its aspiration to create a more sustainable, pioneering and livable city. “Coinciding with the UAE hosting COP28, this strategic agreement with DEWA reflects the growing capabilities of Dubai and the UAE in clean energy as well as the circular and green economy. It will also contribute to reducing approximately 300,000t of carbon emissions annually. We are confident this project will consolidate Dubai’s position as a preferred global destination to live and work as well as support the country’s net zero strategic initiative.”

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December 7, 2023 foasummit0

Civil aviation authorities in Kuwait have said that steady progress is being made on the new passenger terminal building project (T2) at Kuwait International Airport.

Construction works on Phase One of the project are said to be 73% complete, with 68.1% of works complete on Phase Two of T2, according to Acting Director General for (Civil Aviation) Saad Al Otaibi.

The development projects in the airport, as well as the modernisation work of the infrastructure in the air transport sector in the country will continue, he stated. He added that the new passenger terminal was of top priority for the government.

The project is being implemented in three phases with the first comprising the passenger terminal, central station, and the connection to service tunnels.

The second phase involves car parks, service buildings, and roads leading to the new passenger terminal (T2), while the third phase covers aircraft parking and taxiways.

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December 7, 2023 foasummit0

A joint development agreement has been inked between Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) and the Jordanian Ministry of Energy and Mineral Resources. The agreement will see the development of a one gigawatt (GW) wind project with a battery energy storage system (BESS).

Masdar said it has also inked a deal to explore the feasibility of establishing a green hydrogen plant near the Port of Aqaba, which will use desalinated seawater and dedicated renewable power to produce cost-competitive hydrogen. This is said to be part of its goal to achieve one million tonnes of green hydrogen production by 2030.

Masdar CEO Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi signed the deal with the Jordanian Minister of Energy and Mineral Resources Dr Saleh Al Kharabsheh at COP28 in the presence of UAE Minister of Industry and Advanced Technology, COP28 President and Masdar Chairman Dr Sultan Al Jaber and Jordan Minister of the Environment Dr Muawieh Khalid Radaideh.

“With substantial wind and solar resources that can be used to generate large amounts of renewable energy and produce cost-competitive green hydrogen and green fuels, Jordan has the potential to become a global powerhouse in the green energy transition,” explained Al Ramahi.

He added, “Building on the strength of our longstanding partnership, Masdar is delighted to bring our expertise in clean energy projects and technologies to help Jordan achieve its decarbonisation plans and unlock the nation’s enormous potential.”

Masdar already had a substantial presence in Jordan through its Baynouna Solar Energy Company (BSCE), a joint venture with Finnish investment and asset management group Taaleri, which inaugurated the 200MW Baynouna Solar Park, the largest clean energy project in Jordan, in February.

Dr Al Kharabsheh added, “The Jordanian government’s efforts continue to enhance Jordan’s role as a regional centre for green energy production and provide high-quality, cost-competitive green hydrogen fuel by taking advantage of the abundance of renewable energy sources and our nation’s strategic geographical location in the region to provide excellent access to European markets.”

He pointed out that Jordan valued co-operation at the regional and national level, and that the partnership with Masdar – through the signing of these agreements – would help advance the ministry’s priorities and Jordan’s Economic Modernisation Vision (2023-2033). This includes investment in green hydrogen production projects, which are part of Jordan’s initiatives to transition towards the use of clean energy as it aims to achieve Net Zero, he concluded.

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December 6, 2023 foasummit0

Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has given the go-ahead for 10 Public-Private Partnership (PPP) portfolio projects for the 2024-26 period, with an estimated value of US $681mn.

The move is in line with Dubai Government’s strategy to foster public-private partnerships aimed to boost the emirate’s economic growth, by expanding the role of the private sector in the development of infrastructure and the delivery of services.

The projects listed in the Dubai Portfolio for PPPs include the ‘Union 71’ project, a comprehensive residential and commercial complex adjacent to the Union Station of the Dubai Metro, a key interchange station between the Red and Green Lines. The urban transit-oriented development project integrates commercial and residential units and retail outlets with the underground metro station, said the RTA in its statement.

With its proximity and accessibility to the metro, public buses, and marine transport stations, the project will serve and ease the mobility of mass transport riders from all spectrums of the community.

The portfolio also comprises a multi-level parking terminal in Port Saeed & Al Karama, Deira Plaza; smart street lighting; aerial taxi and smart platforms for transport and rental vehicles – as well as housing quarters for drivers in Al Khawaneej, Al Ruwayah, Al Awir, and Jebel Ali.

The list also includes upgrading of the commercial development at Al Karama Bus Station and a ‘sky garden’ suspended bridge over Dubai Creek.

Mattar Al Tayer, Director General, Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors, RTA, said the endorsement of the PPP portfolio stems from RTA’s commitment to enhancing partnership with the private sector and adopting top international practices. He explained that it seeks to map out a comprehensive framework to support public-private partnerships, improve the regulatory environment for long-term collaborations, introduce innovative solutions, and create new opportunities in the mobility and finance fields.

Al Tayer pointed out that RTA had a track record of pioneering experiences in constructing various infrastructure projects in the fields of roads and transport. “Notable among these is the project to establish three comprehensive rest stops for trucks, along with 16 laybys for trucks strategically located across the emirate. The project is the first of its kind in the region,” he concluded.

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December 6, 2023 foasummit0

The development of a solar photovoltaic power plant with a targeted aggregate capacity of up to 1,000MW is set to take shape in Malaysia, following the signing of a deal between Malakoff Corporation and Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar). The deal also outlined the research and development of other renewable energy projects in the region.

The agreement was signed by Malakoff’s Managing Director and Group CEO Encik Anwar Syahrin Abdul Ajib and Masdar’s CEO Mohamed Jameel Al Ramahi at COP28.

The agreement stipulates that both parties will jointly conduct technical and commercial assessments and/or pre-feasibility studies on specific projects that have been identified. The firms will also collaboratively handle the comprehensive tasks and activities involved in the project’s development, implementation and management, including the structuring of financing funds.

In pursuit of a strategic two-phase implementation, the collaboration aims to significantly enhance Malakoff’s renewable energy portfolio, which is said to align with their unwavering commitment to sustainability and strategically leveraging expertise from both parties for mutual growth and success, said a report.

On the strategic collaboration, Abdul Ajib said it is timely when looking at the critical need for sustainable energy solutions amidst climate challenges. He stated, “This collaboration stands as a testament to Malakoff’s robust expansion in renewable energy aligning not only with the global call to action but also resonating with Malaysia’s ambitious objective of achieving Net Zero status by 2050.”

The move is also said to underscore Malakoff’s corporate commitment to making meaningful contributions toward addressing the urgent global imperative for sustainability.

Masdar said it had also recently signed a MoU with Malaysian Investment Development Authority (MIDA), for the development of 10,000MW worth of projects in Malaysia at an investment of $8bn.

Al Ramahi said, “We are very proud to be strengthening our support for Malaysia’s renewable energy ambitions with this partnership. As a clean energy pioneer with over 17 years of experience in deploying renewable and clean energy projects at scale, we look forward to helping build Malaysia’s renewable energy capacity with this agreement in support of its Net-Zero targets.”

To date, Malakoff holds a total of 151MW of renewable energy generating capacity under its portfolio consisting of projects acquired for large scale solar, rooftop solar and small hydro power generation, the report concluded.

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December 6, 2023 foasummit0

UAE-based Aqua Properties has announced plans to launch two major projects – worth US $817mn – in Dubai within the next six months.

Among the upcoming projects is a 50-storey luxury tower on Sheikh Zayed Road and the development of an extensive 300,000sqft plot, the largest land parcel within the Arjan neighbourhood.

Aqua has already completed four residential and commercial projects in the UAE and three more are currently under way.

Aqua Properties’ Founder, Ali Tumbi, commented, “Currently overseeing three ongoing projects with two more in the pipeline, including upscale apartments and strategically located mixed-use developments, Aqua Properties stands at the forefront of innovative real estate solutions. The noteworthy completed projects include J5, J8, O Ten, and Mysk, contributing to positive client responses, high occupancy rates in completed projects, and robust investor interest in ongoing developments.”

Aqua Properties has now set an ambitious goal to deliver over 500 residential and commercial units in the first quarter of 2024.

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December 5, 2023 foasummit0

A US $383mn contract has been awarded for the development of the Oman Cultural Complex. The project is expected to be spread over an area of 400,000sqm in Muscat. The project, which is being set up in the Madinat Al Irfan district, will be completed within a three-year period.

According to a report, Sayyid Theyazin bin Haitham Al Said, Minister of Culture, Sports and Youth, signed the agreement with a consortium of two companies for the project.

The Oman Cultural Complex is said to be a modern landmark and an edifice featuring the country’s civilisation, culture, scholarly accomplishments, and institutional entity.

The new cultural district brings together three major buildings around a wide, central square – the Oman National Theatre, which boasts a 1,000-seat auditorium and a 250-seat flexible auditorium; the 20,000sqm five-storey National Library and the National Archives partially open to the public, including nearly 20km of archival shelf-displays.

The complex also features an exhibition centre, a cultural centre and a cinema, the report concluded.

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December 5, 2023 foasummit0

Saudi officials have announced plans to spend US $92bn to transform Riyadh ahead of Expo 2030. The investment aims to make Riyadh one of the most sustainable cities through initiatives, including the King Salman Park Initiative and Saudi Green Initiative (SGI), as well decarbonisation of the urban transport – within the next seven years.

Princess Haifa bint Mohammed Al Saud, the Vice Minister of Tourism, was speaking during the third edition of the Saudi Green Initiative (SGI) Forum, which opened on the sidelines of COP28. Senior Saudi officials took to the stage to discuss the Kingdom’s sustainable urbanisation progress.

“One of those ways is to have more green spaces, and it’s the King Salman Park Initiative that we are going to develop in the middle of the city to enhance and create that,” she explained.

Under SGI, more than 43m trees and shrubs have been planted across the Kingdom since it was set up in 2021, with 94,000ha of degraded land (equivalent to 146,000 football fields) being rehabilitated across the country.

In his address, Saleh Al Jasser, Minister of Transportation, Saudi Arabia, highlighted some of the actions being undertaken across the Kingdom to decarbonise urban transport.

“We are implementing remote work in government agencies, which helps reduce demand for daily travel. To shift to less carbon intensive modes of transport, we have set ambitious targets to increase the share of public transport, with the Riyadh bus and metro projects well underway,” Al Jasser concluded.

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Source: ME Construction News