Leighton Emtech’s agreement covers the water park and external works of the project, while Al-Naboodah Laing O’Rourke’s covers the two hotels, which will have a total of 2,000 rooms. Under the pre-service agreements, the ventures are assisting the client in developing the scheduling, programming and buildability of the project.

The pre-construction services agreement approach is new to the Dubai construction scene, although it is common in the UK, Australia and the US. By taking contractors on board early, advocates of the system argue that the client saves time and money as the contractors have a detailed understanding of the project before submitting a price for the lump-sum contract.

The 50-hectare development, designed in the myth of Atlantis, will comprise the region’s largest water park, two luxury hotels, an entertainment village and a conference centre. Completion is set for late 2007.

Canada’s NORR Group Consultants Internationalis providing design, structural, mechanical and electrical consulting services, while the UK’s K Home Internationalis providing project management services.