August 2005

Completed Projects:

The Public Works Department in al-Kura in northern Jordan completed reconstruction and paving works on a number of roads for a cost of 90,000 JD (around 12,700 $US). The department will also construct 3.35 kilometers of agricultural roads for a cost of 25,000 JD (around 35,000 $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, August 9, 2005).

Construction work on the new Mu'ta Boys School was completed. The project occupies an area of 4,500 square meters and cost 830,000 JD (around 1.17 million $US). The school is expected to start functioning in January 2006. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 11, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality and the Ministry of Public Works and Housing completed work on the Khalda intersection. The contractor for the project was Mohammad Abu 'Aysha Contracting Company. Work on the 6-million JD (around 8.5 million $US) project started in April 2005 and took 133 days to complete. The intersection consists of a 470-meter, six-lane underpass along King Abdallah II Street, a 490-meter, four-lane underpass along Wasfi al-Tall Street, a roundabout in the center, as well as infrastructure and landscape works. (Sources: al-Ghad and al-Ra'i, August 13 & 16, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality announced that works on theNorth Hashimi Market will be completed by the end of 2005. The market is estimated to cost 700,000 JD (around 1 million $US). The two-story, 1,000 square-meter project is located in the North Hashimi area on a 1.8-hectare public park. The stores will be rented out at affordable prices to residents in the area. The municipality so far has constructed five such markets in the Wihdat, al-Hussein, al-Yarmuk, Wadi al-Seir, and South Hashimi areas of Amman. (Source: al-Ghad, August 14, 2005)

Work on the construction of the Abu 'Ubayda Hospital in Irbid in northern Jordan is 90% complete. The project is expected to cost 300,000 JD (422,500 $US). The Irbid Public Works Department is implementing the project along with a number of other projects in the Irbid governorate, including the Palace of Justice, which is 40% complete. The project is expected to cost 7 million JD (around 10 million $US) and is scheduled for completion during the second half of 2006. Work also is underway on eight low-income housing units in the city of Ramtha in northern Jordan. The units are scheduled for completion in September 2006. (Source: al-Ghad, August 22, 2005)

A Greater Amman Municipality tourism project located along the eastern shore of the Dead Sea was inaugurated. The project, which takes up an area of over two hectares, seeks to realize socioeconomic tourism development through a partnership with the private sector and civil society institutions. The project includes three swimming pools and a restaurant. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 23, 2005)

The Ministry of Tourism and Antiquities completed restoration works on three heritage buildings next to the Karak Castle Plazafor a cost of 150,000 (around 211,000 $US). The buildings will be reused to support touristic and cultural activities. (Source: al-Ghad, August 25, 2005)

The Department of Archaeology at Andrews University in Battle Creek, Michigan, in collaboration with the Department of Antiquities and the Husban Municipality, completed site development and restoration works on the Tall Husban archaeological site. The project is part of a 1996 agreement with the university to rehabilitate the site for a cost of 32,000 JD (45,000 $US). Phase I of the project included the construction of a fence and gate for the site, as well as parking spaces. Phase II concentrated on restoring the southeastern tower and its northern gate. Phase III concentrated on restoring the remains of a Byzantine church. The project also included the renovation of a Roman plaza located at the site. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 25, 2005)

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 Initiation of Projects:

The Dayr 'Alla Development Department in the Jordan Valley started construction on 18 low-income housing units along with the renovation of a number of preexisting houses. The new units differ in area and facilities according to the number of family members living in them. 800 families have applied for low-income housing units in Dayr 'Alla. (Source: al-Ghad, August 11, 2005).

The Ministry of Agriculture started construction on the Hadalat Dam in the Eastern Badiya. The project, which will collect 20,000,000 cubic meters of rainwater, is scheduled for completion by the end of 2005. The total cost of the project is 500,000 JD (around 700,000 $US), and it is being funded by the Ministry of Water and Irrigation, the Ministry of Public works and Housing, and the Hashimite Fund for Badiya Development. (Source: al-Ghad, August 11, 2005)

The Housing and Urban Development Corporation (HUDC) will build 10,000 housing units during 2006 for the benefit of low-income groups. A total of 5,000 units will be built in collaboration with private-sector companies in various governorates. HUDC currently is constructing 681 units in Amman, 68 in Zarqa, 202 in Mafraq, and 84 in Irbid at an overall cost of 3 million JD (around 4.23 million $US). Furthermore, the corporation is planning to grant local private-sector investors plots of land in the Zarqa region to construct 70 to 120 square-meter units at a cost of 7,000 JD (10,000 $US) to 12,000 JD (16,900 $US) per unit. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 14, 2005).

The Municipality of Na'ur currently is conducting a study in collaboration with the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation for establishing a traditional market. The municipality has assigned a budget of 50,000 JD (70,000 $US) to buy land for the project, for which the overall budget is expected to reach 150,000 JD (around 211,000 $US). The project will include upgrading infrastructure services in the area. (Source: al-Ghad, August 14, 2005)

Construction work is underway on a hotel resort and water park at the Dead Sea. The 42.6 million JD (60 million $US) resort, being developed by Sun Days International for Tourism Investment, will feature a five-star hotel and a water park. The project, which is being built on 4.75 hectares, is set to open by the end of 2007, and will feature a 194-room resort, restaurants, cafés, a nightclub, a spa, conference facilities, and a business center. The water park, which was jointly designed by Faris Bagaeen Architects and Engineering Consultants and the Texas-based NBGS International, will have a separate entrance for the public from the hotel, and is expected to open in March 2006. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 24, 2004)

Construction work started on the Seven-Stars Factory for the Spanish Arabesco Group. The factory will be constructed in the free zone in Zarqa on a 1.9-hectare plot for a cost of 30 million JD (around 42 million $US). (Sources: al-Ra'i and al-Ghad, August 25, 2005)

Construction work started on the Teachers Club in Zarqa for a cost of 550,000 JD (around 780,000 $US). The four-storey building, which is located on a 0.4-hectare site, will provide a built-up area of 1,927 square meters, and will include children's playrooms, multipurpose halls, computer labs, a library, swimming pools, and parking spaces. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 31, 2005)

Construction work on phase II of the Tala Bay project (Lake Town) in Aqaba started following the completion of phase I (Marina Town). Lake Town will include 120 residential units located next to a 0.7-hectare artificial lake. (Source: al-Ghad, August 31, 2005)

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 Completed Designs:

Bitar Consultants completed designs for the rehabilitation of branches of Union Bank in Amman and Aqaba. The project, which includes interior design work and redesigning external facades, is expected to cost 180,000 JD (253,500 $US).

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect completed designs for the Palestine Tourism and Hospitality Sciences College for the Palestine Real Estate Investment Company. The project will occupy an area of 10,000 square meters, and will include administrative buildings, a training hotel, a cultural center, in addition to open landscaped spaces. The total cost of the project is estimated at 4 million JD (5.6 million $US).

The Public Transport Regulatory Commission finalized the blueprints for infrastructure and civil works for a bus and car service terminal to be set up near the Queen Alia Hospital. The terminal will be built on a 2.7-hectare site owned by the Greater Amman Municipality. The terminal will replace the one in the 'Abdali district. The 1.5-hectare 'Abdali terminal will be converted into a public park after the completion of the project. Work on the new terminal is expected to start later this month and is scheduled for completion by the end of 2005. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 4, 2005)

Designs for an Orthodox Convent in the Baptism Site along the Jordan River have been completed. The project will be funded by the Orthodox Church. In addition, the Catholic Latin Church has completed designs for an 800 square-meter church that will be located adjacent to the Orthodox Convent. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 15, 28, 2005)

The Zarqa Municipality has completed plans for establishing a number of traditional markets in the city. The first of these is estimated to cost 350,000 JD (around 490,000 $US), and is being funded by the Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation. Each market will occupy an area of 2,000 square meters and will consist of 70 shops and a courtyard, in addition to services and sanitary units. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 22, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality started work on the North Transportation Terminal in Tariq on a 30-hectare plot. The project is estimated to cost 2.5 million JD (around 3.5 million $US), of which 1 million JD (1.4 million $US) will be for construction works and the remaining amount will be for infrastructure works. The new terminal is expected to reduce pressures on the 'Abdali Terminal and on the Queen Rania Street, which serves the University of Jordan. (Source: al-Ghad, August 25, 2005)

The Ministry of Health completed designs for the expansion of the Mu'adh bin Jabal Hospital in the northern Jordan Valley. Construction work on the 1.25-million JD (1.76-million $US) project is expected to start by the end of 2005. The project, which is being funded by a grant from the South Korean government, will include construction of a 1,000 square-meter new building for clinics, emergency facilities, laboratories, and a pharmacy. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 29, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality signed an agreement twinning Amman with Chicago. A cultural week will be held in Chicago within the next two months emphasizing cultural links between the two cities, and will include exhibitions, workshops, and other cultural events. (Source: al-Ghad, August 19, 2005)
 

Designs for the renovation of the Safeway supermarket located along Airport Road in Amman have been completed. The new stores will occupy an area of 22,000 square meters, and will include the supermarket and a food court. (Source: al-Ghad, August 31, 2005)

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 New Commissions:

The Consolidated Consultants – Jafar Tukan Architect were commissioned to design the Royal Village project for the Gulf Finance House in Marj al-Hamam outside Amman. The project, which is expected to cost 350 million JD (500 million $US), will be located on a 47.6–hectare site, and will include built-up areas of 680,000 square meters. It will include 100 villas, 1,000 apartments, 150 town houses, and 200,000 square meters of commercial space.

The Social Security Corporation (SSC) signed two agreements with Habash Deir and 'Umar Abu Saad contracting companies for the construction of the first phase of a tourist resort at the Dead Sea. The project consists of several buildings to be located on a seven-hectare site owned by SSC. It will feature a five-star hotel, chalets, a physiotherapy center, restaurants, swimming pools, and an artificial lake. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 5, 2005)

The Social Security Corporation commissioned the Civil Engineering Company to construct phase I of the Holiday Inn Hotel along the Dead Sea Shore. The project consists of several structures located on a 4.2-hectare plot, including a four-star hotel and chalets, in addition to restaurants and conference halls occupying a total area of about 21,000 square meters. Phase I consists of skeleton works for the project. It is estimated to cost 4.7 million JD (6.6 million $US) and is scheduled for completion in six months. The whole project is estimated to cost 19 million JD (around 27 million $US) and is scheduled for completion in 18 months. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 16, 2005)

The Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA)commissioned al-Qasim Contracting Company to construct phase IV of al-Karama Project. The 24,600 square-meter project consists of 242 housing units that include 91 single-family houses of 130 square meters each, 16 houses of 150 square meters each, and 15 apartment buildings containing 60 living units. The project also includes 75 commercial outlets. Phase I of al-Karama project is being implemented by the National Contracting Company and al-Daris Company for an estimated cost of 2.64 million JD (around 3.72 million $US), and is about 80% complete. Phase II is being implemented by Abu Shraykh and Zughbi Contracting Company for an estimated cost of 3.29 million JD (around 4.63 million $US), and is about 30% complete. Dar al-Khibra was commissioned to implement phase III of the project for an estimated cost of 5.95 million JD (around 8.38 million $US). (Source: al-Ra'i, August 18, 2005)

The Public Transport Regulatory Commission invited investors to purchase 240 new large buses to upgrade public transportation in the capital. The 20 million JD (around 28 million $US) project seeks to upgrade public transport services in Amman as part of an attempt to encourage more citizens to use it. The new vehicles, which are due to start operating during the first quarter of 2006, are expected to move 120,000 passengers daily along 26 routes. Each bus will have a 45-passenger capacity, and will be fitted with electronic display screens at the front and back showing the number of the bus and its destination. Currently, the number of large buses with a capacity of 45 passengers stands at 1,030, of which 222 operate in the capital, providing transportation for 180,000 passengers daily. The new buses will be fitted with a prepaid smart card fare collection system, and will have the ability to run on diesel or gas. Tariffs will range from 0.10 JD (0.15 $US) to 0.40 JD (0.56 $US) per trip. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 23, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality invited tenders for the construction of the Fourth Circle Intersection so that construction may start in October 2005. The project will consist of two underpasses, the lower one along Queen Nour Street (north – south) and the upper along Zahran Street (east – west), as well as a sub-tunnel that connects the two underpasses. The project also will include an additional tunnel that will connect the lower underpass with the 'Abdun Bridge, which currently is under construction. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 29, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality and the National Resources Investment and Development Corporation (MAWARED)announced that construction on the Shmeisani Intersection will start in 2006. The project, which is estimated to cost 7 – 9 million JD (9.86 – 12.7 million $US), will consist of an overpass along Queen Nour Street, two bridges leading to the new 'Abdali project, an overpass that connects Prince Shaker bin Zeid Street and Suleiman al-Nabulsi Street, and a roundabout to facilitate movement in all directions. The project also will involve the renovation of the existing underpass, which was constructed during the late 1970s to connect Queen Nour Street with al-Hussein bin Ali Street. (Source: al-Ghad, August 30, 2005)

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 Competitions:

The Jordan Engineers Association announced the results of the Arab Potash Company Entrance Competition. The first prize winner was architect Ahmad al-'Umari, the second was architectJamal al-'Armuti, and the third was architect Fawzi Barjus. 16 entries were submitted for the competition and all were exhibited at the Jordan Engineers Association. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 7, 2005)

The Arab Cities Organization Award announced the acceptance of nominations for the 2006 award from member cities, governmental and private institutions, universities, research centers, unions and associations, and individuals. The award consists of three categories: city greening, city beautification, and city beautification expert. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 9, 2005)

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 Exhibitions:

The Second Middle East International Building Exhibition BUILDEX was held at the Amman Automobile Exhibition building. Countries participating in the exhibition were Austria, China, Egypt, Germany, Greece, India, Iran, Iraq, Jordan, Russia, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 10, 2005)

Princess Sumayya College for Technology held an exhibition of the works of architect Mais al-Razem. The exhibition, which was entitled Pages of the Universe, included 40 of her works. Al-Razem holds a Bachelor's degree in architecture from the Jordan University of Science and Technology and a Master's degree in architecture and art from Virginia Tech University. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 24, 2005)

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 Seminars:

The Japan International Cooperation Agency and the Iraqi Department of Antiquities, in cooperation with the German and French governments and the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), started a heritage training course for 15 Iraqi officials working in areas related to excavation, conservation, preservation, the environment, and management of archaeological sites. The course, which extends over a period of more than two months, aims at upgrading capacities for the preservation and management of cultural sites. The course also will include five Jordanian trainees, and will be led by seven trainers from Japan, Germany, France, and UNESCO. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 1, 2005).

The Euro-Jordanian Action for the Development of Enterprise (EJADA), under the auspices of its Euro-Jordanian Export Program (EJEP), organized a seminar to present the findings of an extensive study entitled The Identification of Opportunities for Export of Jordanian Advisory and Pre-design Services and Engineering Services to the European Union. Attending the seminar were representatives from the Ministry of Industry and Trade (MoIT), the Jordanian Architecture and Engineering (AE) Forum, the Delegation of the European Commission, the Jordan Europe Business Association, and the Jordan Engineers Association, in addition to a representative from the United Nations Conference on Trade and Development. The study, executed by the Engineering Products and Services Strategic Marketing Group at EJEP in collaboration with MoIT's Foreign Trade Policy Department and the AE Forum, aims at identifying immediate and long-term opportunities for exporting Jordanian engineering services to Europe. According to the study, in order for the Jordanian Architecture and Engineering sector to successfully enter the EU market, it will need to increase the exposure of its services in the EU, and to pursue strategic partnerships and alliances with EU firms and associations. (Source:The Jordan Times, August 4, 2005)

A seminar entitled Building Regulations in Municipalities and in the Greater Amman Municipality was held at the Zarqa Private University. The seminar aimed at rethinking building regulations according to developments in the construction sector. The seminar recommended a number of solutions for building and traffic problems in Amman and other municipalities. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 19, 2005)

The Aqaba Special Economic Zone Authority (ASEZA) and the Jordanian Engineers Association held a workshop in Aqaba entitled Regulations and Construction Supervision in the Aqaba Special Economic Zone. (Source: al-Ghad, August 19, 2005)

The Department of Lands and Survey announced it will hold a seminar in September entitled Real Estate Registration Regulations in the Arab World – Challenges and Ambitions. Countries participating in the seminar are Bahrain, Egypt, Germany, Hong Kong, Italy, Japan, Jordan, Lebanon, Libya, Morocco, the Netherlands, Oman, Palestine, Saudi Arabia, Spain, Sudan, Syria, Tunisia, the United Arab Emirates, and the United Kingdom. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 22, 2005)

The Jordan Engineers Association participated in a seminar entitled Private Engineering Education and its Effects on the Arab World, which was organized in Cairo by the Egyptian Engineers Association. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 29, 2005)

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 Other News:

The Ministry of Information and Communications Technology building in the Third Circle was demolished along with an adjacent building. The Greater Amman Municipality bought both buildings for a total of 1.2 million JD (1.7 million $US). The buildings were demolished to expand the Third Circle roundabout, while the remainder of the plot was sold to Le Royal Hotel to establish parking facilities and a garden. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 7, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality agreed to allow the owners of empty plots in Amman to use these plots as parking lots without having to go through licensing procedures. This decision came as an attempt to reduce parking problems in the city. (Source: al-Ghad, August 11, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality discussed the construction of low-income housing units with the Canada Mortgage and Housing Corporation and the United Arab Investors Company. Three companies will be established for this purpose: the first will provide low-income housing, the second will provide loans for houses, and the third will be responsible for supporting the loans. (Source: al-Ra'i, August 14, 2005)

The Ministry of Transport invited tenders for the study of the establishment of a railway network in the Kingdom. Three European companies bid for the project, which aims at providing a national railway network that also connects Jordan to neighboring countries. The project will include a feasibility study that will address the national and regional levels, and will determine the main routes for the railway (north-south and east-west). The study also will include urban density and demographic studies. The railway network will consist of two main routes: the north-south route, which will extend from the Syrian border until Aqaba; and the east-west route, which will extend from the Mediterranean shores until the Iraqi border, passing through Irbid and al-Mafraq. The network also will include sub-routes that will connect to the Saudi Arabian and Egyptian borders. (Source: al-Ghad, August 18, 2005)

A team from Mu'ta University and the Department of Antiquities unearthed the remains of a Byzantine church with a mosaic floor in Southern Mazar in Karak. Over 60 university students were involved in the excavation, which also uncovered other remains including marble columns and tombs. (Sources: The Jordan Times and al-Ghad, August 21, 2005)

The Greater Amman Municipality launched a campaign to urge citizens to replace trees outside their homes that hinder the movement of pedestrians with more suitable tree varieties. The municipality listed 10 kinds of trees that are suitable for planting on sidewalks. Accordingly, the municipality encourages the planting of deciduous trees that have a 2.5-meter-long leafless trunk, and the capability to endure harsh environmental conditions, diseases and pests, as well as drought. Deciduous trees do not block sunlight from reaching houses during winter, thus helping to provide warmth. The trees also should have deep roots so as not to damage pavement tiles. The municipality's list of the trees most suitable for sidewalks include Acer spp., Aesculus hippocastanum, Ailanthus altissima, Fraxinus spp., Grevillea robusta, Melia azedarach, Platanus orientalis, Robinia spp., Tilia Americana, Ulmus spp. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 23, 2005)

The government launched a project to allocate state land for housing projects to benefit limited-income segments of the population. A higher committee, which was formed for this purpose, set the criteria for distributing state-owned land worth 12 million JD (around 17 million $US). The United Arab Emirates-based United Arab Investors launched a 160 million (around 225 million $US) real estate company to implement low-income housing projects. The company formed a partnership with the Amman-based al-Dahleh Trading Group, and seeks to build residential towns featuring high-quality housing units that will be sold at affordable prices on an installment basis proportionate to the income of the buyers. (Source: The Jordan Times, August 29, 2005)

 

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