Dubai's Deira fish market to be replaced by Dh250m facility in Al Hamriya

Dubai Municipality has approved plans for a 120,000 square metre market with 506 stalls and an auction area.
Dubai Municipality has kicked off a new fish market project in the Al Hamriya area. Handout photo
Dubai Municipality has kicked off a new fish market project in the Al Hamriya area. Handout photo
DUBAI // A new Dh250-million fish market is to be built in Al Hamriya, replacing the one in Deira that has served the emirate since 1988.

Dubai Municipality has approved plans for a 120,000 square metre market with 506 stalls and an auction area.

It will also have 148 fruit and vegetable stalls, 63 spice shops, cafes, restaurants, retail shops and a hypermarket, as well as facilities for storage and freezing.

The project is out for tender and Hussain Nasser Lootah, director general of the municipality, said: "The upcoming fish market is expected to be the most successful market in terms of the shopping convenience for all, as well as its role to boost the economy, especially in foodstuff trade."

The municipality has yet to decide what to do with the site of the old market on Deira's corniche, but, residents said, it would be much missed.

"I love coming here with my children," said Raja Gopal, a 42-year-old accountant. "They should learn where their food comes from. Supermarkets are sometimes mind-numbing - you fail to appreciate the value of the food you have."

Mr Gopal said, however,  that a new market was a "great idea".

"This market is not in the most convenient of locations and parking is sometimes an issue. But I hope that the new market retains the same character that this one has, I think it will be sad if it becomes too modernised and just turns into another supermarket."

Almost 9,000 tonnes of fish were caught in Dubai waters in 2010, according to the Ministry of Environment and Water. The emirate had 772 registered commercial fishing boats that year.

The UAE is thought to be the highest consumer of fish per person in the GCC, with residents eating on average 33 kilograms a year.

MAlkhan@thenational.ae

Published: April 9, 2013 04:00 AM

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