Contractors are still waiting to receive tender documents for the main construction packages on the Muscat convention and exhibition centre.

The Oman Tourism Development Company (Omran) invited companies to prequalify for four construction packages in November 2010, but prequalified contractors are still waiting to receive tender documents for the development.

The first package expected to be tendered will be for the contract to build the 25,000-square-metre exhibition hall, car parking and energy centre.

Further construction packages to be tendered at a later date are for the 3,000-capacity convention centre, five-star hotel and an infrastructure works package. The infrastructure package will include the construction of site roads and the provision of utilities.

In January, Omran formally broke ground on the convention centre project, located on the outskirts of Muscat, about 4 kilometres from the airport. Omran awarded the local Al-Awazi International a OR2.7m ($7m) contract for the site preparation and enabling works package for the convention and exhibition centre project in October last year.

In April 2010, UK-based RMJM was awarded the main consultancy contract, which involves design and engineering work for the project. Canada’s Hanscomb & Company saw off competition from eight other consultants to win the quantity surveying contract for the development.

US-based WATG is masterplanning the development. WATG is also working on another major project in the Muscat area, the House of Musical Arts. The firm was appointed as the architectural consultant for the opera building and is also involved with the design work on the landscape garden (MEED 9:4:10).