As part of the upgrade, new amenities such as restaurants, shops and guest chalets will be built to attract tourists and residents to the beachfront area.

According to sources involved in the project, US-based development manager John Buck International will manage the scheme.

The project follows the guidelines set by the Plan Abu Dhabi 2030 urban masterplan, which shows a park area and public spaces along the cCorniche.

In late 2008, the local Gulf Contractors Company finished the first phase of the project, which involved reclaiming land, constructing a 2-kilometre-long artificial beach and landscaping the park areas.

Abu Dhabi Municipality was the client for the scheme, which cost AED105m ($29m) to complete.

UK-based Hyder Consulting was the consultant.

Abu Dhabi-based developer Sorouh Real Estate is developing a similar project on Lulu Island to the north of the Corniche. The 6-kilometre-long man-made island opened to the public in April 2007 and is currently accessible via a ferry service.

Although it is still largely undeveloped, it has several restaurants, cafes, mosques, a racetrack for horses and camels, and artificial lakes.

Several other major building projects are under way along the highway next to the Corniche, including International Capital Trading’s Nation Towers project.