Land Department makes a U-turn on parking rule
Department retracts parking legislation after uproar by investors
The Dubai Land Department has hurriedly retracted legislation that was to force residents to pay for a car parking space with newly acquired property following uproar from investors.
The legislation, issued recently via a circular to developers, stated that investors must have a paid-for car parking space in order to register their property with the Land Department.
Failure to register would have prevented them from renting or selling their property.
But Damac senior president of corporate communications Niall Mcloughlin confirmed to Construction Week that the proposal has since been reversed by the Land Department.
“The Land Department issued a decree saying they would only register apartments with parking spaces. Subsequently, they issued another decree, saying no, you don’t need a parking space,” Mcloughlin said.
“It [the reversal] was issued around March 20th,” Mcloughlin added. “The Land Department wrote to all the developers saying that tenants do not have to have a parking space, and we immediately informed our tenants of the same.”
The U-turn came in the wake of uproar from disgruntled investors, who contacted ConstructionWeekOnline to complain that they were being forced by developers to pay a substantial fee for a car parking space, when before they were told it was optional.
One investor, Jerry Ascione, paid US $164,000 (AED602,000) for an apartment in Damac’s Crescent development, in the International Media Production Zone.
Ascione said he was then stung with a bill of up to $31,300 for a parking space.
“This issue is something that should already be covered in the strata law,” Al Tamimi property lawyer Mohammed Kawasmi told CW.
It is not yet known whether investors who were forced to pay for a car parking space they did not want during this time are entitled to a refund.
Both the Land Department and the Real Estate Regulatory Agency failed to respond when contacted by CW.
The reversal comes at a time when Dubai authorities are hoping to restore investor confidence, which has suffered a series of setbacks since the onset of the financial crisis.
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