France’s Thinet has started work on the foundations for the estimated AED450m ($122m) Deerfields Town Square mall project in Abu Dhabi.

Thinet is putting in raft foundations for the building, which are used to spread the load of a structure over a large area.

The mall is being built in the Al-Bahia City area outside Abu Dhabi, adjacent to the Sheikh Rashid highway that leads to Dubai.

The 220,000-square-metre mall will have space for more than 200 retailers, including a Carrefour supermarket and a cinema.

It will serve a number of major developments planned in the emirate, such as Al-Raha Beach, Yas Island, Khalifa City, the expanded Abu Dhabi International airport, and the Khalifa Port & Industrial Zone at Taweelah.

The project client, Mubarak & Brothers Property & Financial Investments (MBI), has invited firms to bid by 31 January for contract to build the mall (MEED 5:1:10).

The local National Dewatering has completed the excavation work.

MBI also plans to build residential, commercial and hospitality buildings with a total built-up area of about 100,000 square metres at the site, but they will be developed at a later stage.

The lead consultant is the UK’s RMJM, which will oversee the conceptual design, co-ordination and supervision of the contractors.