Abu Dhabi sovereign wealth fund Mubadala Development Company has prequalified five groups for the contract to build an estimated $1bn football stadium in the UAE capital.

According to sources involved in the bidding process, the prequalifiers include France’s Bouygues with the local/Lebanese Arabian Construction Company (ACC); South Korea’s Samsung Corporation and Germany’s Ed Zueblin; Japan’s Taisei Corporation and Beijing-based China State Construction Engineering Corporation; and France’s Vinci Grand Projets with Athens-based Consolidated Contractors Company (CCC).

According to contractors, the prequalification process required interested groups to prove they had experience of designing and building large, complex stadiums, including the ability to build a retractable roof. Prequalified groups had to have completed at least two $1bn projects during the past five years.

The 65,000-seat football stadium planned for Abu Dhabi is part of the new Capital City District development next to Khalifa City, between Mussafah and Abu Dhabi International airport.

Mubadala held talks with Ed Zueblin in 2008 to design and build the stadium. The discussions failed to lead to a contract award, although Zueblin did complete piling and enabling works (MEED 27:11:09).

UK firms Mott MacDonald and Arup are the project manager and engineering consultant respectively. Davis Langdon, also of the UK, is the cost consultant.

US-based John Buck International (JBI) had also been working on the project, although its role has now ended.

“JBI was appointed by Mubadala Real Estate & Hospitality for the design stage of the new stadium project in the Capital District,” says a Mubadala spokesman. “The design has successfully been completed and the project has now transitioned back to Mubadala Real Estate & Hospitality for the tendering and construction phases.”

Separately, Abu Dhabi General Services (Musanada) is tendering a contract to build an estimated AED350m, 20,000-seat football stadium at Baniyas City, between Abu Dhabi and Al-Ain.

The project’s masterplan includes a shopping centre, tennis club, commercial buildings and parking areas.

The consultant is France’s Roger Tallibert. Musanada is handling the project on behalf of Baniyas Sports & Cultural Club, who’s football team plays in the UAE Football League.