Muscat, Oman, 23 February, 2020: Madinat Al Irfan Development Company SOAC, a partnership between OMRAN and Majid Al Futtaim Properties, has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with the Oman Cycling Association (OCA) to exchange experiences on how to further the integration of cycling activities into its five-million square metre project.
The signing agreement was held following the official visit to Oman by David Lappartient, President of the Union Cycliste Internationale (UCI) - the world’s governing body for cycling, who was briefed by Madinat Al Irfan executives on the plans to integrate a comprehensive cycling infrastructure into the early stages of the development.
Commenting on this important milestone, Talib Omar Al Bulooshi, Executive Manager of Madinat al Irfan Development company SAOC, said “Madinat Al Irfan’s vision is to be a City for the Future. We aspire to offer its residents and visitors a planned, sustainable and smart mixed-use urban environment. Madinat Al Irfan is inspired by best international planning practices and will be inspiring in its distinctively Omani contemporary life style offering. The collaboration with Oman Cycling Association will enable us to benefit from their experience to improve on the planned urban bikeways for daily transport and the more challenging off-road cycling trails that are already integrated into our Phase One master plan.”
Al Bulooshi added that “The Cyclo-city initiative with Oman Cycling Association is a first of its kind collaboration with a master developer in Oman and will hopefully become a didactic example for other developers to adopt in the Sultanate. Madinat Al Irfan cycling trails will become a reality by 2021, as the infrastructures of its first phase will become visible. This strategic partnership is in line with the government’s mandate of sustainability and strongly supports the health and wellbeing of Oman’s people. The adaptation of the cyclo-city philosophy in Madinat Al Irfan will support our cause to promote cycling as one of the pillars of a healthy life style”.
David Lappartient, President of the Union Cycliste Internationale applauded this initiative, saying: “Madinat Al Irfan vision is indeed inspiring and grand. I am very happy to know that cycling is already integrated into the planning of the city from an infrastructure and lifestyle perspective, an opportunity that not too many cities have. Cycling is an environmentally friendly form of transport that will deliver both environmental and social benefits for Oman in the long-term.”
Saif Al-Rashdi, Chairman of Oman Cycling Association, said: “It’s an incredible milestone to see cycling being integrated within one of Oman’s flagship new destinations. This initiative directly aligns with the government’s vision for sustainable developments, while promoting the healthier lifestyle that is at the core of our mission. Madinat Al Irfan’s geographical size and hilly terrain is a cyclist’s dream for a cyclo-city, that is integrated and safe to cycle through and full of challenges as well. We are so optimistic that with the success of this initiative, cycling will become more accepted as a mode of transport and will foster its development nationally.”
It is to be noted that enabling earthworks for the construction of Madinat Al Irfan Experience Centre commenced end of 2019 with target opening date of this first building end of this year.
About Madinat Al Irfan Development Company
Madinat Al Irfan Development Company is a joint venture partnership between Oman Tourism Development Company (OMRAN) and UAE-based Majid Al Futtaim to develop almost 5 million square metres of land at Madinat Al Irfan into a new integrated urban district in Muscat.
The mixed-use community is located opposite the Oman Convention and Exhibition Centre and the project investment value is estimated at OMR 5 billion over a period of 20 years creating more than 30,000 direct and indirect jobs in the country. Centrally located in Muscat’s urban growth corridor, the development will create a modern downtown for residents, businesses and visitors.
In total, Madinat Al Irfan will feature more than 11,000 residential units comprising villas, townhouses and apartments, 100,000 square metres of retail space, 700,000 square metres of office space, as well as a number of cultural and lifestyle venues. The first phase of the project covers more than 250,000 square metres of land and is scheduled for completion by 2023.
Using the most innovative and sustainable development and business partnership approaches, while remaining true to Oman’s unique and rich cultural heritage – Madinat Al Irfan provides a master plan platform for others to invest, work, play or reside in.
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