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Dubai’s unfinished Falconcity plots sell at steep discount

Falconcity model Reuters
Falconcity was originally intended to be home to a vast replica of the Taj Mahal
  • Project launched in 2005
  • Intended to house replicas of world landmarks
  • Plots auctioned for half starting bid

Hundreds of plots of land from the long-delayed Dubai real estate master project Falconcity have been auctioned off, at a discount of more than a billion dirhams on the initial asking price.

Falconcity of Wonders, an AED5.5 billion ($1.5 billion) master development launched in 2005 during Dubai’s property boom, had promised buyers views of replica landmarks such as the Eiffel Tower or Taj Mahal.

While models at the project were once a prominent fixture at UAE property fairs, the “wonders” themselves remained unbuilt.

This August, 794 plots at the site near the Global Village went up for auction with a collective starting bid of AED2.58 billion.

The Emirates Auction’s website, where the plots were offered to potential bidders, showed that the majority of the Falconcity plots received a single bid this month. They fetched a total of AED1.3 billion – effectively a discount of almost half.

The plots cover 15 million square feet in total and were designed for villas, apartments, townhouses, hotels, shops, offices, a mall and a theme park.

Alharith bin Salem Al Moosa, Falconcity’s vice-chairman, in 2016 attributed the project’s prolonged delay to sub-developers’ failure to bring the replicas to life.

Al Moosa was still optimistic at that time that the project would continue. He added that the developer was in talks with potential investors for new funding of $2 billion that would result in the project being completed by 2020.

The original masterplan included a Taj Mahal replica four times the size of the original, a version of the Hanging Gardens of Babylon and districts recreating cities such as London and Rome.

Other replica landmarks in the masterplan included replicas of the Leaning Tower of Pisa and the Great Wall of China

Elsewhere, The Dubai Pearl and Nakheel’s Palm Jebel Ali development, both of which were originally announced in Dubai’s property boom in 2002 but later stalled, are being looked at again.

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