Waiting game: A pizza delivery boy waits for a tenant to come down and open the door of a building at England Cluster after the new system went live this week XPRESS/Pankaj Sharma Image Credit: XPRESS/Pankaj Sharma

Dubai: A new access system that went live last Sunday in several clusters of Nakheel’s sprawling International City are proving to be a bane rather than a boon, residents told XPRESS.

The new security feature, launched by regulatory authority Trakhees earlier this year, is estimated to affect thousands, including residents, restaurant, laundry and grocery delivery boys. Most of them have spoken out in unison against the new restrictions.

Syrian Fadi Mohammad, a tenant in the Persia Cluster who owns a fast food joint in the adjoining France Cluster, is ill at ease with the new system on both counts.

“I have yet to get an access card. It’s not my fault. My landlord hasn’t paid his service fees. It’s been a struggle to get into my apartment ever since this new system began a few days ago,” he says.

“I am also at the receiving end as a service provider. My delivery boys end up spending more time as customers have to come down and open the doors to collect their orders,” he adds.

Another Syrian resident, Loy, says his neighbour had to wait for almost 20 minutes for someone to arrive before he could enter the building around midnight after work because there was no watchman on duty at that time. When XPRESS checked, watchmen said they were letting in guests and delivery boys to avoid initial hiccups during their duty hours.

Indian Pankaj Kumar who owns a one-bedroom apartment in the England Cluster, says acquiring a card wasn’t easy at all. “I had to first pay my service fees and then go to the [Nakheel] head office in Al Sufouh with the title deed. I don’t understand why we couldn’t get it done from their office in Dragon Mart nearby,” he said.

When XPRESS spoke to newspaper vendor Siraj Mohammad, he said he was facing problems getting access to deliver newspapers early morning.

“I am forced to leave the newspapers at the main entrance and many customers who miss their paper are calling me almost everyday,” he says.

Nakheel, however, has maintained all this is being done to maintain the appropriateness of the place and root out the problems of sub-letting.

They had been issuing notices that earlier said the new system, including security cameras, was being installed “in the interests of upholding the property value of individual units and enhancing security and safety of the community”.

Earlier notices on front entrances included warnings by management Trakhees against overcrowding in apartments.