The Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN) and Majid Al Futtaim created a joint venture
The Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN) and Majid Al Futtaim created a joint venture to build Madinat Al Irfan, a mixed-use community project, worth over OMR 5 Billion
In November 2018 the foundation ceremony was held for one of the largest urban development projects in Oman, 4.5 million square meters big and worth OMR 5 billion. It is a mixed-use community called Madinat Al Irfan but often also titled “City of the Future”.
It is supposed to be human-centric and true to Oman’s local culture and heritage. The community will consist of more than 11,000 residential units like villas, townhouses, and apartments and is expected to have a living, working and visiting population of 280,000 people. Additionally, in Madinat Al Irfan 100,000 square meters of retail space and 700,000 square meters of office space will be created. The contemporary architectural design language of Madinat Al Irfan draws inspiration from the local, vernacular architecture, providing expression to Omani cultural identity.
The community is located adjacent to the Oman Convention & Exhibition Centre (OCEC) on the western side of Muscat, which was built in 2013 and is successfully hosting world class exhibitions and conferences since 2016, notably the Big Show, an annual international exhibition that caters to the building and construction industry in Oman, the Middle East and global markets.
The masterplan has been set for the first 250,000 square meters of the community and is part of the first phase of the project, which is scheduled to be completed by 2023. One of the biggest benefits of this project is that, by creating sustainable urban destinations and significant socio-economic benefits, such as more and higher-quality living space and sustainable financial returns that can be reinvested into the society for the Sultanate, the project contributes to Oman’s Vision 2040 of diversifying its national economy. In detail, the OMR 5 billion investment over a period of 20 years will generate approximately OMR 400 million returns for the economy through renting and selling the residential units, as well retail and office spaces. Further returns are to be expected because the project is supposed to be a catalyst for further investments into Oman. This is expected to happen by attracting new citizens, retailers, as well because the project will make Oman more internationally known and furthers the need for investments in infrastructure like renewable energy production.
Moreover, the project will not only benefit Oman on a financial basis but also is expected to create more than 30,000 jobs. To achieve this Oman Tourism Development Company and Majid Al Futtaim combined their strengths and created a joint venture company for this project called Madinat Al Irfan Development Company SAOC. The joint venture is an example for a public private partnership between the governmental Oman Tourism Company and the private Majid Al Futtaim LLC. Majid Al Futtaim is known for pioneering in the shopping mall, communities, retail and leisure segment for 17 years. They were responsible for notable projects such as Al Mouj, City Centre Muscat, My City Centre Sur, and City Centre Qurum.