Construction work has started on a AED850 million ($231 million) project in Abu Dhabi that will feature a 5,000 sq m aquarium - the biggest in the UAE capital - as well as its largest cinema.
The Municipality of Abu Dhabi City in partnership with AlBarakah International Investments, said in a statement that the Al Qana project is being positioned as a tourist and entertainment destination.
Located along the Khor Al Maqta area in Abu Dhabi, it will be one of the new urban landmarks of the emirate, the statement added.
Misbah Mubarak Al Marar, acting director-general, Municipality of Abu Dhabi City, said that Al Qana is the first-ever build-operate-transfer (BOT) model and is being jointly developed with the private sector.
Saeed Bin Omair, chairman, AlBarakah International Investments, said the project would cover an area of 150,000 sq m and extend over a 2.4km waterfront.
As well as an aquarium and cinema, the project will also include a family entertainment centre, a marina, a huge dedicated area for indoor and outdoor sports, restaurants, picnic areas and community shops, a walk path connected by four bridges; and running and cycling tracks. Parking for around 3,000 vehicles will also feature.
Bin Omair revealed that Al Qana is scheduled for completion by the first quarter of 2018.