The Jordan Ring Road project, which was constructed by the Greater Amman Municipality and the Ministry of Public Works and Housing, was completed. The 34.5 million JD (48.6 million $US) project, which is 28-kilometer long and extends from Wadi al-Haddadah in Amman to the Abu Nusayr area at the northern outskirts of the city, was constructed in 5 phases. Phase I stretched 4.96 kilometers, from the Raghadan – Wadi al-Haddadah area to Istilqlal Street. Work on this phase was completed at the end of 1997 for a cost of 7.5 million JD (around 10.5 million $US). Phase II stretched 1.49 kilometers, from Istiqlal Street to the Martyr's Mausoleum. Work on this phase was completed at the end of 1998 for a cost of 5.5 million JD (around 7.7 million $US). Phase III stretched 5.62 kilometers, from the Martyr's Mausoleum to the Yajuz area. Work on this phase was completed in May 1999 for a cost of 4 million JD (around 5.6 million $US). Phases IV and V stretched 8.25 kilometers, from Yajuz to Abu Nusayr. The street includes six overpass/underpass intersections. The project aims at shortening distances that need to be covered as one moves from one part of Amman to the other. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 7-8, 2005)
The Royal Garden in Tall al-Rumman, which was established by the Royal Society for Marine Protection and the Ministry of Agriculture, was opened for the public on March 21, 2005. The 17,000 square-meter garden is intended as a model botanical garden that raises awareness regarding the importance of the protection of ecological systems. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 22, 2005)
The Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDC) completed the Amman 2 / al-Quwaysmah project, which consists of 434 residential and commercial units, and cost 360,000 JD (around 500,000 $US). HUDC also is working on a number of other projects, including phase IV of the Salem / Sahab project, which consists of 208 residential and commercial units as well as related infrastructure and parking facilities. The project also includes a mosque and a community center. The total cost of the project is estimated at 359,000 JD (around 500,000 $US). Phase III of the project is being implemented in collaboration with the private sector. It consists of 202 residential units and 11 commercial units, and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2005. In Zarqa, expansion work on the Batrawi project, which includes 69 residential units, currently is being implemented. Future plans for HUDC include the implementation of the Zarqa Employees Housing Projects 1 and 2 and also the Shafa Badran Housing Project. HUDC also will implement a number of projects in collaboration with the private sector including the al-Zaytunah, al-Yasmin, Umm Batma, al-Fayha', al-Saru, and Green Madaba Housing projects. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 27, 2005)
Initiation of Projects:
Construction work started on the extension and renovation project of the French Embassy in Amman. Design Associates and Research Bureau (DARB) completed the design for the project in a joint venture with the French consultants Derbesse Delplanque Architects and CET. The extension area will be approximately 1,600 square meters, and will include a basement and two floors. It is scheduled for completion in February 2006, after which renovation work will start on the existing embassy building. The renovation is scheduled for completion in August 2006. DARB also was awarded construction supervision services for the project, and Na'il Atiyyah Construction Establishment was selected as the contactor for the project.
Arabtech-Jardaneh Engineers and Architects completed the designs for al-Karamah Border Center for the Ministry of Public Works and Housing. The project consists of 72,250 square meters of buildings and other facilities located on a 450-hectare site at the Jordanian-Iraqi border. The estimated cost for the project is 65 million JD (around 91.5 million $US).
The Ministry of Transport announced that it is considering the construction of a new building in Jordan's primary airport, the Queen Alia Airport, which is located south of Amman. The new building will connect the two existing passenger terminal buildings. It will have an area of 60,000 square meters, thus expanding the area of the passenger terminal buildings to 120,000 square meters. The expansion project aims at accommodating the expected increase in air traffic affecting the airport over the next 30 years. The project also will include the renovation of the existing buildings. The ground floor of the new building will be for arrivals, and the upper level will be for departures. In addition, the number of departure and arrival gates will be increased, and the duty-free shop will be expanded. On a related note, the US-based engineering consulting firm the Louis Berger Group, and Sigma Consultants were commissioned last year to improve some of the facilities in the airport. The work is expected to be completed in October 2005. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 29, 2005)
The Department of Architecture at the Jordan University for Science and Technology (JUST) held three lectures as part of its ongoing lecture series. The first lecture was by Anne Gharaibeh, Assistant Professor at JUST's Department of Architecture, entitled Converging Quality in Recreational Environments. The second lecture was by Matthew Barton, entitled Tony Fretton Architects: Two and a Bit Projects. The third lecture was by Syrian architect Sinan Hassan, entitled Poetry + Geometry: Thematic and Mathematic Architecture.
The Jordanian government officially announced that its 50-year concession contract signed in 1958 with the Jordan Petroleum Refinery Company will not be renewed upon its expiry in 2008. The company consequently has started preparations for the upcoming period, and has announced an 800 million JD (around 1.13 billion $US) expansion plan aimed at increasing its capacity and improving the quality of its products. The company also will start a restructuring plan that includes separating its various activities (refining, storage, transport, and distribution), which also will result in establishing at least 3 new subsidiary companies. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 29, 2005)
Reports from the Central Bank of Jordan for January 2005 revealed that 1,308 licenses were granted for residential and non-residential buildings for a total area of 614,000 square meters. 1,166 licenses were granted for residential uses covering an area of 484,000 square meters. The remaining 142 licenses were granted for non-residential uses covering an area of 129,000 square meters. Amman had a total of 570 licenses covering 398,000 square meters. Irbid followed with 188 licenses covering 40,000 square meters, and Zarqa had the third number of licenses, with 169 licenses covering 48,000 square meters. For residential construction, the number of licenses was 486 for Amman, 187 for Irbid, 139 for Zarqa, and 354 for the remaining cities. For non-residential construction, the number of licenses was 84 for Amman, 1 for Irbid, 30 for Zarqa, and 27 for the remaining cities of the country. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 31, 2005)
The Japanese Embassy in Amman granted the Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) 22,000 JD (31,000 $US) for the completion of the Wadi Rum Visitors' Center, which was initiated by a grant from the United Stated Agency for International Development (USAID). The center is intended to give visitors an understanding of the Wadi Rum area and its topography. (Source: al-Ra'i, March 26, 2005)