Dubai developer Nakheel has appointed the UK-based Halcrow as its design consultant for the Boardwalk project on the crescent of Palm Jumeirah.

The Boardwalk aims to transform the Palm Jumeirah’s protective crescent into a unique destination for walking, shopping and dining, and create a new focus for the island. The project will cover the whole of the existing crescent, with a pier stretching 100 metres into the Arabian Gulf at either end.   

Nakheel will create the scheme by building over the rocks of the Palm’s breakwater. It will be six metres wide – more than double the width of the existing crescent path – with more than 20 concessions offering refreshments and souvenirs throughout its 11-kilometre length. 

The Boardwalk will include East and West piers, each offering extensive views of the Arabian Gulf, Palm Jumeirah and the Dubai skyline, and featuring a range of glass-encased cafes and restaurants.

Nakheel expects to start tendering for the construction of the scheme in the second quarter of 2014.

One of the companies hardest hit by Dubai’s real estate crash, Nakheel has led the emirate’s property recovery by starting work on new projects that have sold out on launch, as well as posting encouraging financial results.

The company recently said it will be largely debt-free by September 2015, as it starts to prepay bank debt and outperforms the restructuring plan it set in 2011 by AED22bn ($6bn).

During 2014, the developer plans to tender construction contracts totalling more than AED6bn, as it continues to move forward with new schemes. The largest contract Nakheel plans to award will be for the scheme to build its Nakheel Mall on Palm Jumeirah, for which bidders are submitting prices in January.

The project is set to be one of the biggest construction schemes awarded in Dubai this year. The five-level, 418,000-square-metre retail, dining and entertainment centre will have 200 shops including a 4,200-sq-m supermarket, two anchor department stores, a nine-screen cinema and six medical clinics.