Dubai: Residents in Dubai’s Discovery Gardens are kicking up a stink over a strong smell of sewage in the air.
The complaints are mainly from residents in the Contemporary area along Street 5, but others areas are also reportedly affected.
Residents said the stench started roughly 10 to 15 days ago and follows similar complaints last summer.
Garden sprinklers spraying treated water are apparently the cause, tenants said, as the odour dies down when these are turned off.
The sprinklers usually start very late at night or early in the morning, some tenants told Gulf News. However, others said they are sometimes also on during the day.
Gulf News was met with a heavy sewage smell on a recent visit to areas where sprinklers were on. There was little to no noticeable odour in places where the sprinklers were off.
“Every morning and late evening our apartments are full of a sewage aroma — rendering the air unbreathable,” said a tenant of building 109 in the Cotemporary area, who did not want to be named.
Developer Nakheel says Discovery Gardens is a 26 million-square-feet development of themed communities inspired by garden living, It has more than 26,000 apartments.
“I have contacted Nakheel several times and their response was ‘yes, we know and it will be fixed’. This usually happens every year before summer but not to this extent.
“My friend lives on Street 3 and has the same issue. He called Nakheel last week and they told him it would take ten days to change the filters.”
He added: “This is not new; we first noticed this issue last summer, and we thought the smell was from the bathrooms. Maintenance checked it out and told us nothing was wrong.
“The smell came in from the air-conditioning duct which is located in the bathroom of each bedroom. Then we found a connection with the sprinklers when they are on.”
An Indian grandfather visiting his family in the Contemporary area said on condition of anonymity: “The sprinklers were on early morning and that’s when the smell came. It’s really bad and bothering us.”
A Pakistani cleaner in the area added: “I think it’s because of the water in the sprinklers. The rising heat and humidity makes the smell worse.”
He went on to say that “people have complained about this – but they also complain if the sprinklers are off for long because the grass starts drying up. So they complain regardless.”
A Nakheel spokeswoman said: “We are aware of this issue and are working on a solution. In the meantime, we apologise for this inconvenience.”