The temporary Naif Souq opens
Engineer Hussain Nasser Lootah, acting director general of Dubai Municipality officially opened Thursday the temporary Naif Souq built by Dubai Municipality for the traders of the old Naif Souq, which was gutted in an inferno early April.
Lootah said, “The temporary Souq, which is now ready for receiving the public, was set up by the Municipality with the best specifications that suit this type of markets within the shortest possible time”.
He added, “We have provided the most suitable shopping atmosphere in the market in a way that will preserve the old heritage aspect in consonance with the nature of the original Souq,” The Municipality, which completed the work of the temporary Souq within a record time of 45 days ahead of the scheduled time of 60 days, had handed over the keys to the shop owners during the past few days as all works of the project were completed. During the last week most of them had finished moving their goods to the new shops.
The temporary market, which is located 500 meters away from the original Souq, houses same number of 200 shops. All utilities are connected such as water, electricity, drainage and the Civil Defence requirements such as fire extinguishers are also met with.
The materials used in constructing the Souq were fire-proof and they could be easily reused in constructing similar facilities after dismantling them. Light weight steel structures were used instead of timber wood, which is susceptible to catch fire. The Souq can be made permanent or dismantled later.
The compensation announced by the Municipality for the shop owners of the old Naif Souq was distributed during the last few days. The shop owners need not pay any additional rents until the new Naif Souq is ready by the end of the year.
Lootah said that the Municipality has launched a special advertising campaign also about the opening of the Souq in different media in the Gulf countries in order to continue to get visitors of the old Souq who are spread all over the Gulf countries, adding that the Municipality was keen to provide all facilities that would meet their necessities and also made it a point that they would continue to get from the market what they used to get before.
Naif Souq was one of the oldest traditional markets in Dubai, having been named so thanks to its proximity to the ancient Naif Fort. The 60,000 sq ft market was also popularly referred to in Arabic as “Souq Sanadiq” because of the box-type shops before they were renovated in the 80s.
Present at the occasion were senior officials of the Municipality and a large number of the public.