Complex Made Simple

Cityscape Global: You can buy projects right here, right now

Cityscape Global, set to be held from September 11 to 13 at Dubai World Trade Centre, is for the first time allowing developers who are showcasing a range of groundbreaking real estate projects to sell on-site to homebuyers and investors.

“This is a great opportunity for developers to increase their ROI and visitors to capitalise on attractive price options, making informed purchasing decisions directly on the show floor,” says Tom Rhodes, Exhibition Director, Cityscape Global.  “Only registered projects are showcased and now sold at the exhibition.”

Appetite for properties

Last year, a Cityscape Global survey found that close to 30 per cent of attendees were homebuyers and investors, while 68 per cent of visitors said they intended to make a purchase or conduct business during the exhibition. In addition, a YouGov attitudinal survey revealed that 42 per cent of GCC and Egyptian investors see the UAE as the most attractive country in which to invest in real estate.

Cityscape Abu Dhabi, in April this year, permitted sales directly from exhibitor stands for the third year running, which resulted in an increase in ROI for many local developers, including Aldar, who sold a significant portion of  ‘The Bridges’ and generated AED400 million.

Lower prices

According to Lynnette Abad, Partner and Head of Property Monitor at property consultants Cavendish Maxwell, the average apartment prices across Dubai have continued to trade within a close range of AED1.2m to AED1.4m over the past 12 months, while average prices for villas have moved from AED3.7m in Q3 2016 to AED 2.2m this quarter.

“Lower priced villa inventory continues to enter the market in locations such as Dubailand, impacting price dynamics for existing communities,” says Abad.

“For apartments, starting prices of AED700,000 in emerging locations such as Dubai South and Sports City are driving demand from first-time buyers. Communities with existing infrastructure and amenities continue to fare better than outlying areas with limited facilities and most projects under construction,” she adds.

Sustainability is key

Homebuyers are weary of buildings’ energy consumption. Technological advancements in design, materials and construction techniques are vital to developing Dubai’s future buildings, according to Tariq Khayyat, Head of Region at Zaha Hadid Architects (ZHA).

Speaking ahead of his presentation at the Cityscape Global Conference in September, Khayyat says he believes Dubai has significantly pushed the boundaries of sustainability by supporting and implementing new, innovative solutions to help create a more sustainable city.

“Sustainability is no longer a choice option within the industry. By marrying innovative digital design with ecological sound materials and sustainable construction practices, ZHA works towards delivering practical solutions to the defining challenges of our era,” he adds.

Carlos Ott, Founder of Carlos Ott Architects echoes similar opinions. “Today, with access to new and more sophisticated materials, I expect an even faster and deeper change internationally. For example, the substitution of fossil fuels by sustainable ones will force us to re-think our strategies and solutions,” he notes.

Rules’ rulers present

Other impactful topics at the event include the emirate’s regulatory landscape. This will involve participation and expertise-sharing from Dubai Land Department (DLD), Real Estate Regulatory Authority (RERA), Department of Economic Development (DED), JLL MENA and Smart Dubai Government.