Board index » GENERAL » News and Sport

 


Post new topic Reply to topic
          
Author Message
PostPosted: Wed May 04, 2016 6:29 am  |  Posted from: Egypt
  

Egyptian God
Egyptian God

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 7113
Topics: 513
Images: 2
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: None specified
National Flag:
Egypt
An item on this morning's BBC News caught my attention......a Wall Street Journal update on the New Capital project.

http://www.wsj.com/articles/big-chinese ... MtcdTNwyiA

By TAMER EL-GHOBASHY and ESTHER FUNG
Updated May 3, 2016 2:25 p.m. ET

CAIRO—When President Abdel Fattah Al Sisi announced an ambitious plan to build a new administrative and business capital for Egypt on 270 square miles of desert land, many were understandably skeptical about the $45 billion project.

Today some of the skepticism over that March 2015 announcement has eased. One reason: an alliance announced in January between Egyptian authorities and China State Construction Engineering Corp. giving the Chinese-state owned business a major role in the project.

Moreover, there is now movement at the desert site about 30 miles east of Cairo. In early April, Egyptian construction companies commenced work to develop roads, sanitation and communication infrastructure that will underpin the massive undertaking, according to Mostafa Madbouly, the minister of housing.

“We will overcome any obstacle to implement this project,” Mr. Madbouly said in a written statement on the day the project broke ground.


To be sure, the plan’s immense scale still sounds too good to be true to many experts. It calls for some 20 residential districts with mixed-income housing for about seven million people and tall skyscrapers adorning a planned downtown financial district.

The planned development will also include an international airport set to be larger than London’s Heathrow, a public park dwarfing New York’s Central Park and an amusement park four times the size of Disneyland to serve its residents and visitors.

At the same time, other Egyptian attempts to build new towns on Cairo’s outskirts have been mired by inefficiency and produced underwhelming returns, says David Sims, an economist and urban planner who wrote two books studying urban development in Egypt. “Egypt needs a new capital like a hole in the head,” he said in an interview. “But the government is looking for investment and being able to announce an achievement.


The planned new Egyptian capital, which hasn’t yet been named, was designed to provide a lifeline to Cairo, which is home to some 18 million people. Officials expect that number to grow to 40 million by 2050.

New megaprojects on the scale of the Egyptian new capital plan have a spotty track record around the world. Many have never gotten off drawing boards. But there are several examples of newp caitals being created in the middle of nowhere, including Canberra in Australia; Islamabad in Pakistan; and Brasília in Brazil.

Mr. Sims said Egypt faces more hurdles than most of these other countries did when they embarked on their new capital projects. For example, foreign investment in Egypt has been limited since the coup, with the country’s economy being propped up largely by donations from Gulf countries. Government funds will inevitably have to be allocated to more pressing concerns, he said.

(The above are extracts from the lengthy article)

With the military mindset in control, and all the other issues of poor governance that have beset Egypt over the years, the surrounding war zones etc.... it is difficult for me to believe this will be a success.

I hope to be proved completely wrong as , health permitting, I wish to spend the rest of my days in this country which, despite its shortcomings, I have grown to love


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Fri May 06, 2016 6:31 pm  |  Posted from: Australia
  

User avatar
V.I.P
V.I.P

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:23 pm
Posts: 1174
Topics: 241
Images: 0
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: Male
Age: 58
National Flag:
Australia
The Wall Street Journal might say seven million inhabitants but the ever reliable and non-hyperbolic al Ahram says 18 million. Why not say 50 million - its only a press release.

That worm that turns - al Ahram - also spouts that the new city will have 'widespread' international investment (including from Italy - can't the Men from the Ministry spin doctors keep up to date). Here is the Ministry report on the issue published without irony or comment before the worm recently rediscovered its journalistic independence and integrity:

"Egypt’s new administrative capital, which will be built for $45 billion, is an ambitious three-stage housing project mainly financed by private investors from the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, Kuwait, Germany, Singapore and Italy. When complete it will house 18 million citizens in a new, environment-friendly city.” http://weekly.ahram.org.eg/News/16027/1 ... tice-.aspx

The contracts are already being let and none of the excellent 'winning' candidates seem to lack an Egyptian uniform (ret.). Discretion and paranoia are the best parts of valor in commenting further on this.


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2016 4:27 am  |  Posted from: Egypt
  

User avatar
Royal V.I.P
Royal V.I.P

Joined: Mon Mar 30, 2015 4:45 am
Posts: 2846
Topics: 236
Images: 30
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: Male
National Flag:
Cyprus
If they can afford to purchase Hafiz? Is there any investment coming to Upper Egypt, or is it reserved for Lower Egypt?


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Sat May 07, 2016 1:04 pm  |  Posted from: Australia
  

User avatar
V.I.P
V.I.P

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:23 pm
Posts: 1174
Topics: 241
Images: 0
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: Male
Age: 58
National Flag:
Australia
MT - sorry, don't know.


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 4:29 pm  |  Posted from: Australia
  

User avatar
V.I.P
V.I.P

Joined: Mon Feb 20, 2012 4:23 pm
Posts: 1174
Topics: 241
Images: 0
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: Male
Age: 58
National Flag:
Australia
For those interested in a state of the art videos illustrating the proposed new capital – always a sure guide to how things will turn out. Surprisingly this Egyptian government website gives the projected population at neither the government press release nine nor al Ahram’s 18 million, but five million. It’s a big project they will sort out these population details on the job http://www.thecapitalcairo.com/index.html

The US architects responsible for the project are a bit more ambitious than the government web site and state that the plans they prepared for the government are for a city of seven million. So many confusing options for those just trying to get in first and buy off the plan. The actual architect’s design, not the press release, will, according to the architects, be seven times the size of Paris and 12 times the size of New York (I assume they mean just Manhattan). Presumably this means that the al Ahram population of 18 million will produce a city 17 times Paris and 30 times NY. It’s sadly too easy to carp when faced with real vision and imagination, why not just embrace the ambition - and, as the graphics prove, it’s anything but smoke and mirrors.

The Minister has even told international architectural magazines that the city would be ‘completed’ by 2022. http://www.worldarchitecturenews.com/pr ... o.htmlThis link contains the ultra futuristic stills of how the city will look. http://www.gizmag.com/capital-cairo-egypt-som/36648/ and even more at http://www.som.com/news/skidmore_owings ... pital_city A replica scale model of the city is at http://gizmodo.com/egypt-wants-to-build ... 1691780079 although, disappointingly, it seems that this model features an area of only less than one Manhattan. They need to get the carpenters going on the full 30 times Manhattan scale model. It could become a new tourist site. They will need lots of space space to display the eagerly awaited completed model but I've heard that the new Grand Egyptian Museum is on time and budget and will be opened any day and its bound to have lots of space for historical artifacts. Putting it in the old, and very soon to be vacated,Tahir Square Archaeology Museum might be a better idea and would send the right message in a more central location. The press conference to launch the full scale model will be amazing!

The naysayers point to New Cairo – planned and announced for one million residents and the government/administrative capital in 2000 and currently less than 200,000. Egypt learns from her mistakes, this time round the land will be sold not given away and, anyway, the new Minister has announced that New Cairo is not unfinished and will soon be 5,000,000 and that its growth will not detract from the growth of the new capital. That makes overall space for 23 million with other projects like the million low cost houses/flats being announced every day. The million houses will hold six million so that gives a total of 29 million and all of it to be completed in only a few years.

As everyone knows housing is the number one economic issue in Egypt and all these initiatives are bound to increase exports, strengthen the pound, improve productivity, increase tourism and create jobs which will go well beyond the building phase. Just imagine how many bewab jobs there will be, and gardners and pool boys. Stories of cheap Indian and Chinese labour being used for the build have, correctly, been rebutted by the government as terrorist trash and, in any case, the Emeriati's have learnt to abandon the practices of 30 years.

The government may eventually need to get the numbers in sync - but short term who cares - no local newspaper has complained and, after all, its Egypt’s biggest project since the dam-- bring on more graphics - they make people feel good and give them hope in bad times.

Prospective local contractors have hope and are salivating – although many have been overseas since 2011 on holidays – but saliva is a well-known lubricant for decision-making wheels including a right to return.

To raise extra revenue and further promote the project the government can re-use the graphics for an outer space multi-media computer game and sell that on the internet.

The principal financier (builder?) appears to be Emmar of the UAE and this project shows heroic ambition for a company with current yearly revenues of about $4 billion and huge concurrent plans elsewhere in, but alas only in, the 3rd world. http://www.bbc.com/news/business-31874886. Giving them the land for free will only be good for Egypt. http://www.thenation.com/article/white-elephants/New Cairo may have been a lesson about giving developers free land but we should not just rigidly and mechanically apply all the legal lessons from the past. Besides the returning builders and contractors are more familiar with doing business this way.

The architecture firm responsible for these 2001 Space Odyssey graphics (and surely many more detailed specs to be released by them soon in addition to the loosing designs from the strangely silent unsuccessful competitor architectural firms), Skidmore, Owings & Merrill LLP, were able to do this project without even needing to open an office in Cairo. They have an office in the Middle East but it is in Abu Dhabi. Maybe this was just a ‘doodle’ for this famous firm. Oddly they don’t list Cairo as a current project - just a press release. Its a bit easier that way because it avoids bothersome detail. Hope that the fact that it is not a current project doesn't mean that they have cut off all contact with it.

Wonder where they did all the ‘on the ground’ detailed needs-based planning from? Maybe they are so experienced in this type of work that they just need to do generic plans from NYC and then leave all the bothersome detail for others to work. Brilliant! Might be sensible for them to share some of the subsequent work, now that the hard bits are done, because they are new to the work of designing cities. They have not done any before although they are very good at single buildings. A first for Egypt and for this firm. Heroic. However leaving it to others runs the risk the final result won’t live up to the promise of their marvelous graphics. Pity, the space age city design could be used by those Egyptologists with the outer space theories of Egyptian ancient history to promote their theories that Egyptians are descended from aliens (no doubt good for tourism) - because aliens would surely want to build and live in a city just like this. Maybe they would be the only ones who would want to.


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
PostPosted: Wed Jun 22, 2016 7:29 pm  |  Posted from: Egypt
  

Egyptian God
Egyptian God

Joined: Thu Oct 17, 2013 10:49 am
Posts: 7113
Topics: 513
Images: 2
Arcade Highscores: 0
Gender: None specified
National Flag:
Egypt
And people say I'M cynical :lol:

Excellent analysis Hafiz.

It's a no-brainer. Put me down for two penthouses......my deposit cheque's in the post.


  Top                        
Reply with quote  
 
Post new topic Reply to topic


Similar Topics

 Similar topics   Author   Replies   Views   Last post 
Egypt's treasures to receive a new $1 billion home

in History and Archaeology

DJKeefy

1

67

Wed Jun 06, 2018 4:43 pm

Egypt is getting a new capital - courtesy of China

in Know Egypt

DJKeefy

31

1900

Mon Oct 10, 2016 9:41 pm

4 companies to start first phase of Egyptian new capital...

in Know Egypt

DJKeefy

1

257

Thu Mar 31, 2016 6:55 pm

Hurghada - Arab holiday capital for 2017

in Know Egypt

newcastle

4

1122

Sun Nov 20, 2016 6:04 pm

 


Who is online

Who is online Users browsing this forum: Ahrefs [Bot] and 1 guest


Display posts from previous:  Sort by  
Jump to:  

You cannot post new topics in this forum
You cannot reply to topics in this forum
You cannot edit your posts in this forum
You cannot delete your posts in this forum
You cannot post attachments in this forum