Developed area on display for visitors at the Living Legends Community in Al Barari, Dubai. Image Credit: Clint Egbert/Gulf News

Dubai: Developer of Living Legends, a new Dubai community, has assured residents that efforts to resolve various problems in the community are underway and the results will be evident before the end of this year.

Saleh Tabakh, CEO of Delta International Real Estate, a subsidiary of the community’s private developer Tanmiyat, discussed the community’s development status with Gulf News, after receiving numerous complaints from property owners and residents in the area.

Patience is running thin among expat property owners who have recently moved into Living Legends and are frustrated with unfinished aspects of various amenities such as landscaping and in some cases lack of power and water connections.

Tabakh said the initial handover dates for different phases of the community were set to be between 2012-2014 — however, after the economic slowdown in 2008, handover dates were pushed to June 2016.

The community has three phases: phase one includes 186 villas that enjoy water and electricity connection; phase two has 144 villas of which some were handed over to owners without electricity connections, and phase three consisting of 170 villas, without water connections.

Tanmiyat is currently funding the cost of electric generators and water tankers for some residents.

“Out of 250 handed over villas in the project, only three have been supplied with a generator. These villas were handed over because tenants wanted to move in regardless of the fact that there was no electricity connections, and we have their requests in writing,” said Tabakh.

He said the infrastructure work for water connections had been completed by the developer and Dubai Electricity and Water Authority (Dewa) over a year ago, but there have been delays by the authorities to link them with main water supply. “We have promised residents that they will have permanent water connections before November 2017,” said Tabakh.

He said that delay in landscaping is also linked to lack of water connections in the community, which were promised to be provided by the authorities in the first half of 2017. “We cannot deny the fact that the landscaping project has been delayed, but it because of lack of water connections. In phase one we are supplying water manually for irrigation purposes, but we need the treated water supplied by municipality for our landscaping projects. The infrastructure for water connections inside the community has been 100 per cent complete, but we need them to be linked to main water supply by the authorities,” said Tabakh.


Resident’s voices

Talking to Gulf News, residents of the area said they were shocked to find their dream homes handed over to them with multiple defects, including cracks in ceilings and broken tiles.

Indian villa owner P.D, contacted Gulf News after more than a dozen residents of the community failed to apprise the authorities of their problems

P.D, who moved into his villas in May, faced several issues like a broken AC and lack of a water connection by Dewa.

“I was not told at time of handover that there was no water connection in my home.” He said despite repeated assurances that the issue will be resolved nothing has been done so far. 

He also said the issues of broken AC and water pump were resolved 10 days after he lodged a complaint with the management.

“There is a sense of insecurity among residents that this project won’t be completed soon. Management needs to reach out and communicate with residents and home owners over the issues,” he added.

Another resident, A.J, who moved into his villa with his wife and two children around five months ago, said he is disappointed with the lack of basic facilities and promised green areas in the community.

“It looks like a huge dune bashing area with debris and flat tyres around. There are no playgrounds and little street lighting and my kids are scared to go out and play. Progress is slow and a lot of false promises have been made to us,” said A.J.

He said the construction quality of building is not what he expected. "There are cracked doors and hollow tiles that have installed on thin layers of cement. I have raised the issues with the developer but there has been no response so far,” he said.

A resident who wanted to remain anonymous, said, that she told the developer about cracks and leakage in the ceiling and broken tiles before the handover of the villa to her.

“Many people have put their life savings into buying these villas. I have hired a private contractor to complete the villa because management took no action when I raised the issues with them. The community does not have a maintenance team on site,” she said.

However, Tabakh said Tanimyat offers owners a snagging process, where they are given the chance to list down any defects in the villa at handover.

“No project can be delivered in 100 per cent perfect condition, otherwise there is no need for defect liability period, and snagging process that the government and the Real Estate Regulatory Agency (Rera) has enforced, which is over a 12 months period from the date of handover notice,” said Tabakh.

He pointed out the developer has also accepted detailed reports by private contractors hired by residents, which point out defects in the properties. “We have signed off on attending and resolving the listed defects as long as they are not a result of misuse,” he said.

Tabakh also pointed out that water tanks are cleaned before handover, however, it is the resident’s responsibility to maintain it once used.


New deadlines


Regarding the facilities and services being provided at the community, Tabakh said diversion works taking place at the current entrance to the community will be completed in a few months, while two other entrances and exits to the community will also be built, one of which will connect the community to Al Khail Road.

He pointed out permanent fences will be placed to gate the community after all construction work is completed, while playgrounds in the community are ready to be handed over.

“Construction on the international school in the community has started by a third party, and should be operational in around a year and a half, while the hotel should be completed in around 24-28 months,” he said.

Tabakh, also referred to the much awaited golf course, which he said will be operational in the first quarter of 2018.

“We have a mutual interest with the residents to complete this community. The situation if not perfect, but we are facing the difficulties and with the change of management and new contractor hire, things will only get better form this point on. We aim to complete the whole project in 24 months,” added Tabakh.