x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

TDIC restarts contract bids for Abu Dhabi's Louvre

An invitation for fresh bids for the construction contract for the delayed Louvre Abu Dhabi museum has been issued.

A model of the Louvre Museum on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi. Sammy Dallal / The National
A model of the Louvre Museum on Saadiyat Island in Abu Dhabi. Sammy Dallal / The National

Abu Dhabi's Tourism Development and Investment Company (TDIC) is inviting contractors to submit fresh bids to build its delayed Louvre museum project on Saadiyat Island.

The developer yesterday retendered the main contract works on the museum.

The Louvre Abu Dhabi is the result of an intergovernmental agreement between France and the UAE signed about five years ago.

"In line with the recent announcement made by the Abu Dhabi Executive Council regarding the delivery timeline of the Saadiyat Cultural District museums, TDIC confirms it has now begun the process of tendering the main contract works for the Louvre Abu Dhabi, which is due to open in 2015," TDIC said. "The company anticipates this contract will be awarded by the fourth quarter of 2012."

The new timetable for the three museums planned for the first phase of the cultural district on Saadiyat Island was announced in January.

The Louvre Museum is expected to be followed by the Zayed National Museum, scheduled for an opening in 2016, and the Guggenheim in 2017.

Abu Dhabi has already started amassing pieces of art for the collections. The French architect Jean Nouvel designed the Louvre project, one of the main features of which is a 180-metre-wide dome.

The capital originally launched a tender for the main contract works on the Louvre two years ago, but no contract was awarded.

Last October, the tender for the concrete works at the Guggenheim Museum, which was also issued in 2010, was recalled.

To date, the attractions that have launched on the island include the Saadiyat Beach golf course, the exclusive Monte Carlo Beach Club, and the Park Hyatt and St Regis hotels.

The entire Saadiyat Island project was initially projected to cost US$27 billion (Dh99.17bn).

Last month, TDIC said it was considering selling some of its assets to pay its debts, with apartments and hotels on Saadiyat and in the Eastern Mangroves development among those it was contemplating offloading.

The developer is understood to be in talks with Gulf investors, with deals expected to be concluded within the next few months.

rbundhun@thenational.ae