Database for Dubai buildings set to complete next year

A new building classification system being developed by Dubai Land Department will be complete by the end of 2017.

Mohamad Khodr Al Dah, the head of the organisation’s technical affairs department, said that about 44 per cent of all non-freehold areas have now been classified, comprising 2,000 plots and 230,000 individual units.

The Land Department started work on the system in June last year because records in non-freehold areas are not as detailed as in newer parts of the city, he said.

“In JLT, I can tell you how many parking spaces there are, how many units there are, how much is in the common areas.

“In older parts of Dubai, we don’t have that luxury. We don’t know with each plot what’s on it. Sometimes we have to go to Google Earth to see if a plot is built or not, because the data is not continually updated with the authorities,” he added.

“When we go to that level, we know there is a building there, but we don’t know if it’s commercial or residential, and we don’t know the [number of] units.”

The department’s work has involved visits to each plot and the completion of a standard, 64-point questionnaire assessing each building’s facilities.

This will be used to eventually form a “star rating” for buildings.

Mr Al Dah said that work in mapping the building stock had now been completed in Deira and is under way in Bur Dubai and Mankhool.

After this, Za’abeel and Oud Metha will be mapped, then Hatta and buildings along Sheikh Zayed Road.

“We want to finish Sheikh Zayed Road before the summer, then it’s easy because there will be one team blasting Jumeirah… and there will be one team in the industrial zones,” he said.

“We’re doing it as an experiment to see what we have. Later there might be a fee charged if you want to update your data. If your apartment is a one-star and you’ve done some works on it, you can come and pay a fee and then we can re-survey it. But we still haven’t decided any­thing.”

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