Aldar in talks to manage delayed Masdar project

02 March 2010

Local developer lined up to complete renewable energy research centre

Local developer Alder Properties is in talks with Abu Dhabi Future Energy Company (Masdar) to manage the development of the delayed Masdar Institute of Science & Technology (Mist).

The first phase of the institute was due to open late last year and it is understood Masdar will use Aldar’s experience on other fast-tracked building projects, such as the multi-billion dollar Yas Marina Circuit racetrack that was completed last year, to get the scheme completed.

Aldar’s involvement in the project follows senior executives, including Khaled Awad, who was managing the real estate and building projects at the $22bn green city, leaving the project.

“Aldar Properties is in discussions with Masdar with relation to providing project management advisory services focusing on the Masdar Institute. Further information will be released at a later date as appropriate,” an Aldar spokesman told MEED.

The local/Hong Kong Al-Ahmadia and Hip Hing team is already working on the first phase of the project, which was originally scheduled for completion at the end of 2009. At first 100 students and 50 faculty staff will be based there. This figure will increase to 1,000 students within seven years.

Masdar is also close to awarding the contract to build the next phase of Mist, known as 1b, MEED reported in January.

US-based Parsons Brinckerhoff is the project manager for Mist.

Aldar may also manage the development of the adjacent Masdar Institute Neighbourhood that will include residential, hospitality, commercial and retail developments, parks and a playground. US-based Aecom won the contract to provide project management consultancy services on that part of the project in November last year.

Elsewhere on the development, Masdar is advanced negotiations with two companies for the contract to build its headquarters building. The two contractors are US-based Contrack International and Germany’s Ed Zueblin.

Chicago-based Adrian Smith & Gordon Gill Architecture has designed the building as the world’s first large-scale ‘positive energy’ building, generating more energy than it consumes. US-based Louis Berger Group is the project manager.

The 6.5-square-kilometre Masdar City, designed by Foster & Partners, is set to be completed by 2016. It will eventually grow to accommodate 1,500 businesses and 50,000 residents.

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