x Abu Dhabi, UAETuesday 25 July 2017

Aldar generates Dh100m from Gate Towers apartments on Abu Dhabi’s Reem Island

Aldar has sold or leased nearly half of the first batch of 400 apartments, with thousands more to come.

Gate Towers, left and Sun and Sky tower on Reem Island in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National
Gate Towers, left and Sun and Sky tower on Reem Island in Abu Dhabi. Ravindranath K / The National

The Abu Dhabi property developer Aldar has generated Dh100 million from selling apartments at its Gate Towers development on the capital’s Reem Island as the company’s deputy chief executive called the return of the market.

Aldar said yesterday that in the six weeks since it had started handing over apartments at the striking linked towers, it had sold or leased nearly half of the first batch of 400 apartments while thousands more are set to come on to the market. Aldar reported that it had leased 110 of the 400 available apartments and sold another 70.

“This significant sales and leasing activity marks an important moment in the return to growth of the real estate market in Abu Dhabi,” said the Aldar deputy chief executive Mohammed Al Mubarak.

“We are witnessing a significant rise in demand for quality housing which is driving sales and leasing activity,” he added.

However, the 180 newly sold or leased apartments comprise only a tiny fraction of the 3,533 apartments in the entire project.

Aldar said that 1,200 more apartments had been forward-sold to investors before the financial crisis. Another 900 had been sold to the Abu Dhabi Government at the time of its merger with Sorouh last summer.

And construction work has completed on a final 1,033 located in the adjacent Arc building next to Gate Towers. The developer said it would start to hand over the apartments in the Arc over the coming weeks.

Mr Al Mubarak said that the news reflected a revival in activity across Reem Island, an ambitious 6.5 million square metre natural island located 600 metres off the Abu Dhabi coast which has been hit hard by the global financial crisis, leaving much of the island a mass of empty sand plots of half completed stalled towers.

He added that of the 98 sub-developments planned on Shams Abu Dhabi by other developers, eight have now been completed, another eight are either already under construction or will commence in 2014-15, and 61 have designs which have either been approved by Aldar or are currently under review.

Last week the contractor Arabtec announced that it is about to start work on the second phase of Gate Towers after it was awarded the Dh2.59 billion construction contract to build it.

“Development activity on Reem Island is starting to return,” said William Neill, the head of Cluttons’ Abu Dhabi office.

“Over the past few months we have been asked to conduct a number of new development appraisals and property valuations on the island as developers start to look at resuming work on residential and commercial schemes and we expect this trend to continue throughout 2014 and into 2015 as house prices and rents increase.”

lbarnard@thenational.ae