UAE-based developer Al-Maabar is planning to break ground on the first phase of its $10bn Marsa Zayed waterfront development in the first week of May this year.   

The tender for the main construction contract of Marsa Zayed will be issued at the end of May, with construction scheduled to commence late in the third quarter of this year. The project’s first phase is scheduled for completion in the final quarter of 2014.

Located near the centre of the coastal city of Aqaba in Jordan, the $200m first phase of the project includes developing a 300,000-square-metre-site, which comprises a 33-storey mixed-use tower, a social gathering space for 2,000 people, 146 townhouses, 263 apartments, the first of three marinas and associated infrastructure.

Kuwait’s KEO International Consultants will serve as programme manager on the first phase of the project with the local Arabtech Jardaneh as the infrastructure consultant. UK-based Atkins will serve as marine consultant for the marina project.

US-based architecture firm Callison designed the masterplan. Business consultancy will be carried out by a partnership of US-based Jones Lang LaSalle and Hong Kong’s TransAct Asia. US-based Aecom and Canada’s Hanscomb Limited will serve as cost consultants on the project.

The 3.2 million sq m Marsa Zayed is the largest project in Jordan’s history and will be completed in two phases. The first phase includes preparing two million sq m of the site and developing the 300,000 sq m mixed-use project.

The second phase includes developing the final 1.2 million sq m and will not commence until the land around Aqaba Port is handed over to Al-Maabar in 2017. The estimated completion date for the entire Marsa Zayed project is 2035.

Al-Maabar was established in 2007 as a joint venture between six Abu Dhabi-based real estate companies: Mubadala, Aldar Properties, Sorouh Real Estate, Reem Investments, Reem International and Al-Qudra Holdings (MEED 25:9:08).