Dubai: While developers are still in two minds on new projects for Abu Dhabi, SinoGulf has decided to go right ahead and launch one. An upscale residential property, Capital House, will come to market in the first quarter and near Adnec’s Capital Centre. It will have 332 one- and two-bedroom units.

The property “will provide a much needed supply of one- and two-bedroom apartments which the market currently lacks, especially in an established on-island location with good connectivity and amenities,” said David Cockerton, fund manager, SinoGulf.

“In addition to the well-documented “flight to quality”, recent developments have supported the establishment of new sub-markets. A good example is Capital Centre, where the completion of a number of projects across all asset classes has seen this ‘micro-city’ come of age during 2013. The further establishment of Capital Centre and other new and emerging locations is likely to continue as the overall Abu Dhabi real estate market matures.”

In 2012, SinoGulf launched an office high-rise, International Tower, in Abu Dhabi and which now counts on McKinsey & Co., BAE Systems and AECOM Technology among its tenants. “In commercial offices, new, high quality stock performed collectively well in 2013 and has raised occupier expectations for new developments — developers will need to take [this] into account when planning and designing new schemes.

“Having seen significant absorption of new stock during 2012 and 2013, the market — both residential and commercial offices — is well-placed to see new project starts from 2014 onwards. This is particularly true of quality developments in well-connected locations.

“We will continue to focus on leasing at International Tower and the demand we witnessed leads us to believe that 2014 will be a year of strong performance for this sector, especially for developments of a certain pedigree and reputation.”

But isn’t there a general concern about an oversupply situation persisting in Abu Dhabi for a while now? “This is very sector-specific and even extends to segments within each sector,” said Cockerton. “Developers have to be clever in understanding which segments of the market are undersupplied, even when there is an impression that there is enough supply generally.”