Emaar to boost amenities in Dubai's Mira neighbourhood after residents claim development falls short of expectations

Mira homeowners said the property developer is yet to complete its masterplan for the neighbourhood

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - March 21, 2019: Sarah Dabbas (m), Tamara Jaber and Ghali Al Edwan. Residents in Mira are angry that Emaar has said work on the community is completed despite promised projects not being delivered. Thursday the 21st of March 2019 Mira, Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National
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Property developer Emaar has said plans are in place to build a new mosque and retail centre in Dubai's Mira neighbourhood after residents complained about a lack of amenities.

Homeowners who moved into townhouses in the gated community in 2017 said the developer is yet to deliver on its plan for the community.

A petition set up calling for a gym to be built has attracted nearly 500 signatures.

However, Emaar, who spearheaded the Mira project, said the community is already served by a range of facilities, with more on the way.

“We already have a community retail centre in Mira with a supermarket, pharmacy, laundry, salon, café and restaurants among others,” said a spokesman for Emaar.

“A second community centre is currently under design and development. We are also working closely with the authorities to build a mosque in the community; meanwhile, we have already built a temporary mosque.”

He added that Emaar is in discussion with “educational service providers” towards fulfilling the needs of the community.

“Currently, the closest educational facilities are just about 5 to 6km away,” he said.

In some cases, residents claim they were misled when buying the properties and were considering selling or moving elsewhere and putting their homes up for rent.

“I feel like I have moved out to the middle of the desert under false pretences as we have no amenities,” said resident Sarah Dabbas.

“I am considering selling my house and renting it out to someone else because I am so fed up.”

The Mira Community Townhouses website, which lists properties on sale for up to Dh2.4m for a four-bedroom house, described the area as having a residents’ club with walkways to nearby schools and mosques.

“We have received huge support because people are so frustrated,” said Ms Dabbas, a mother-of-two who works as an interior designer.

“We knew it was a faraway place when we moved but we thought that we would never have to leave the community when we were shown the masterplans when we moved in.

“It’s not worth the hassle having to go on long drives to other areas to use a gym or a mosque. The traffic alone makes it a complete waste of time.”

Dubai, United Arab Emirates - March 21, 2019: Residents in Mira are angry that Emaar has said work on the community is completed despite promised projects not being delivered. Thursday the 21st of March 2019 Mira, Dubai. Chris Whiteoak / The National
Residents in the Mira community set up a petition to highlight their concerns. Chris Whiteoak / The National

The residents said that Emaar has yet to provide a residents’ club, with gym and recreation facilities, as promised.

They were also critical of the mosque that was built in the community, arguing that it was not fit for purpose and falls short of what they expected.

“They did build a mosque at the entrance but it is not what they promised,” said Ghali Al Edwan, vice president of a sales company, who purchased a property in the community more than two years ago.

“It was meant to be a proper fully-functioning mosque but we have to go the one in Arabian Ranches because it’s far too small to accommodate everyone and does not even have a section for women.”

Mr Al Edwan, 39, said the lack of a school in the area was placing parents under added strain.

“We feel that we have been completely misled and instead of having the promised amenities we have to look out our windows at empty stretches of sand where they should be,” he said.

“It’s frustrating as well trying to communicate with Emaar as, when we contact them, we never get to speak to a senior figure who can tell us what is going on.

“We have been told they are trying to find a sponsor to help build a school but there was no mention of those issues when they took our money. It’s affecting the value of our homes.”

Emaar said it encouraged residents to discuss any concerns they have with them.

“There are several communications channels for our residents to approach Emaar’s team and we urge our residents to use them,” said the Emaar spokesman.

“We are duty-bound to support them and will continue to ensure their continued well-being.”