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THE NAC: A BEACON OF HOPE

Posted On Oct 16, 2018

Of the new urban centers in the pipeline, the New Administrative Capital is the government's largest and most ambitious. Planned over a 170,000- feddan (7I4-square-kilometer area between Ain Sokhna and New Cairo, the NAC is the same size as Singapore and will host the state's ministries, parliament and the diplomatic missions to Egypt. At Euromoney, Ismail described the NAC as "a fully integrated city with an extensive transportation network, infra structure, housing and government facilities," as well as medical complexes, schools, universities and  technology parks Upon completion, the new capital will become home to 6.5 million residents. In October 2017, President Abdel Fattah El Sisi launched its first phase on a 40,000- feddan (168-square-kilometer) area, being developed at a total cost of EGP 17 billion. Featuring residential units a luxury resort, government buildings and a new international airport, the first phase is expected to be fully ready for residents by the end of 2018. Government officials also told the press that ministries and governmental offices were to move to the capital by mid-2019, at a cost of EGP 35 billion. In November 2017

The New Urban Communities Authority (NUCA) announced it would increase its planned investments in the NAC from EGP 8 billion to EGP 10 billion in FY2017/18 to accelerate construction on phase one's residential district, which will include 25,000 units and infrastructure work. NUCA invested EGP 6 billion in the new capital in FY 2016/17 The NAC project is also a potential investment magnet. In early September 2017, the government signed agreements worth USD 11 billion with Chinese investors to develop the new capital's infrastructure and transportation networks. China state construction engineering corporation (CSCEC) has contracted with the housing ministry to develop one of the new capital’s 20 districts, joining china fortune land development company and the metallurgical corporation of china among the top developers of the NAC’s first phase. The government is also offering a number of opportunities to regional and local investors for residential, commercial and social infrastructure. Several private developers have sought plots to develop mixed-use communities in the city, including UAE-based Emaar properties, which is applying to develop 1500 feddans (6.3 square kilometers) in August 2017, local developer better home launched a sister Midtown project in the new capital for luxury homes and commercial facilities. In October 2017, Misr Italia started promoting its Bosco project, an upscale mixed-use Il community that will begin delivering in 2020. Both projects have seen strong demand: all 390 of Midtown's villas sold out within three months while Misr Italia sold out the first phase of Il Bosco within five days of its launch. Prices started from EGP 12,000 and EGP 9,000 per square meter for Midtown and Il Bosco, respectively over November and December 2017, the government sold nearly 5,000 feddans (21 square kilometers) of land at EGP 3,500 per square meter to developers including Talaat Moustafa Group Holding, Arab Real Estate Development Company and Misr Real Estate Management for residential projects, commercial complexes and office blocks in the first phase. While high prices are a positive signal for demand, it has raised questions of how the future capital will be able to meet the housing needs of 70% of the population with limited incomes. "The only people who can afford these new homes are those 3.5 million Egyptians working in the Gulf," David Sims, a Cairo-based urban planner told the Financial Times in September 2017. The government has allocated investments to construct affordable housing units in the new city, several of which will start selling by Q2 2018.

URBAN SPRAWL UP NORTH: NEW ALAMEIN CITY

 another SDS 2030 goal in the state's push for new cities is to better utilize the coastal areas, normally regarded as seasonal destinations. A case in point is the North Coast one of the country's most popular summer vacation venues, yet one of the most sparsely populated areas  due to the lack of social infrastructure such as medical and educational facilities. New Alamein City, in the Marsa Matrouh governorate, looks to change that. Billed as an eco-city, New Alamein is a 48,000 feddan (202 square kilometer city that will house 3 to 4 million residents and integrate touristic, residential, agricultural, commercial and industrial activities. Construction on the USD 337 million project started in , 2014. The city's first phase is expected to house up to 400,000 residents and include commercial complexes and a yacht harbor.