Stock - Dubai Investments Park
Dubai Investment Park has been one of the most popular mixed-use destinations through the years. Schon Properties had two projects there, the Business Park and 'Dubai Lagoons'. Image Credit: Clint Egbert/Gulf News

Dubai: Dubai’s master-developers are getting tough with non-performance.

Dubai Investments has taken possession of the Schon Business Park project at its industrial park. The Schon Business Park was launched with much fanfare in the mid-2000s and in all these years never managed to progress much.

This is why Dubai Investment has taken a decisive step. “Our subsidiary - Dubai Investments Park (DIP) - has taken over the management of Schon Business Park, located in DIP 1,” said Khalid Bin Kalban, Vice-Chairman and CEO at Dubai Investments.

“The building will be rebranded under a new name – Plaza Central - and the formalities for the same are currently underway.

A “failure to meeting timely contractual obligations led to the current status.”

Playing with investor funds

Schon Properties was one of the many names that came into the development picture in the mid-2000s as the freehold market took wings in Dubai. Apart from Schon Business Park, the developer also had the ‘Dubai Lagoons’ project at DIP. Both projects had no difficulty getting offplan property buyers. However, a good start was the only thing that Schon Properties could achieve.

Through these last 15 years, Schon came up with back up plans to revive the projects that lurched from one delay to the next. There are property investors in these projects that bought in 2008-08 and still have no clue about any completion.

On the Schon Business Park takeover, Kalban said: “Al Mujama Real Estate – a Dubai Investments subsidiary company and led by a team of experts - will be responsible for the facilities management of Plaza Central moving forward.”

Stock - Khalid Bin Kalban (Dubai Investments)
Khalid Bin Kalban, Vice-Chairman and CEO of Dubai Investments, says the company will take each contract with a third-party developer on a case-to-case basis. Image Credit: Ahmed Ramdan/Gulf News

Case-to-case basis

Will DIP crack down on other developers at DIP who have not made progress with their projects?

“The Dubai Investments Park management has implemented procedures and policies for the mutual benefit of all parties concerned and will continue to maintain a conducive business environment across all the integrated zones,” Kalban added.

“There is no blanket policy implementing one rule for all - every contract will be evaluated and assessed and will be treated on a case-to-case basis to ensure smooth business operations.”

What of ‘Dubai Lagoons’?

The Dubai Investments’ move only applies to the Schon Business Park. The status of ‘Dubai Lagoons’ is not known. Only six of the 50-odd buildings were completed in nearly 15 years since the launch. Thousands of investors remain impacted by the non-completion. Even the six buildings that are built have not received official completion certification, according to some of the investors.

“We remain hopeful that the Dubai Lagoons project too will see intervention by the authorities,” said a property investor. “Dubai Investments has shown the way by taking over the Schon Business Park.”