Local developer Arada has announced plans to for a major masterplanned mixed-use project in Sharjah, according to a company statement.

The project, which will cover an area of 2.2 square kilometres, will be developed at a cost of $6.5bn and will be made up of residential, retail and commercial buildings.

The project will be delivered in a series of phases, with work starting on site early next year and completions expected from 2019 through to 2025.

The project will be located near Sharjah’s University City and will home 70,000 residents, the statement added.

Details of the project are set to be revealed during this year’s property exhibition Cityscape Global being held in Dubai on 11 September.

Earlier this year MEED reported that local firm Omran Properties announced plans to launch $670m-worth of real estate projects in Sharjah.

The developer, which is made up of a partnership between the Sharjah Investment and Development Authority (Shurooq), Dubai’s Emaar Properties and Abu Dhabi’s Eagle Hills, said it will develop three major mixed-use schemes in the northern emirate.

The largest of the planned developments is Maryam Island, an AED2.26bn ($615m) mixed-use project located between Al-Khan Lagoon and the Al-Mamzar peninsula.

Other projects include the Al-Khan Village Resort, a $33m five-star hotel. The company also plans on building the $29m Kalba Waterfront Mall.

Despite this drive to improve Sharjah’s retail and entertainment offerings, rents are set to fall in this year, according to a number of real estate consultancies.

The emirate’s population has been growing rapidly due to its more affordable real-estate rents compared to Dubai, but more recently declining rents in Dubai have started to affect the Sharjah market.

According to UK-based Cluttons, rents in Sharjah’s residential and commercial property markets have fallen for a second year in a row, increasing tenancy options in the emirate.