“In a worldwide economic downturn, any corporate must analyse the market and ensure that its business strategy is aligned to make the most of new opportunities, as well as ensure risk management strategies take account of the new financial landscape with a focus on new market and investor demands,” says a spokesman.

“In performing this analysis, Meraas Development has identified a number of new opportunities.

“We have seen that investor demands have changed and a developer such as Meraas needs to quickly respond to meet these market needs,” adds the spokesman.

The outcome of this analysis is expected to affect the roll-out of Jumeira Gardens.

“We are simply reviewing our business strategy as well as the phasing and roll-out of the Jumeira Gardens project to make sure that the development proceeds in the most opportune way to meet changing investor needs.

“By the beginning of 2009 there will be more clarity and details on the Jumeira Gardens master-plan and the product roll-out,” says the spokesman.

The Jumeira Gardens project covers two main areas: the redevelopment of land in the Satwa area between Sheikh Zayed road and Al-Wasl road; and from Al-Dhiyafa street to the new Creek extension in the Safa Park area, and seven offshore islands.

The first phase covers an area of 820,000 square metres.

It will have six main blocks of high-rise, mid-rise and low-rise office, residential and retail buildings, as well as two hotels and a shopping area.

Landmark buildings that will be constructed as part of the project include 1 Dubai, which will be one of the tallest and largest buildings in the world and will have three towers; the Park Avenue tall tower; and Park Gate, which will be made up of six paired towers spanning a canal running through the development.

Construction of the first phase has already started and the first buildings are due for handover in the fourth quarter of 2011.

Final completion of phase one is set for the fourth quarter of 2013.

The overall project will take 12 years to complete (MEED 6:10:08).