A months-long legal dispute over the construction of City Center mall’s much-delayed third phase of expansion appears to have reached a settlement, Habtoor Leighton Group has said.
The UAE-based contractor filed dozens of lawsuits against Qatari company Al Faisal Holding last August. A new timeline of completion has been set for the project, which entails building three new hotels, for 18 months from now.
Habtoor Leighton, a subsidiary of Australian contracting company Leighton, launched its legal complaints after Faisal Holding sought to cash in some $100 million in performance bonds from the project.
Habtoor Leighton is building three towers on the mall’s eastern side to house new Shangri-La, Rotana and Merweb hotels.
Last fall, it said it was seeking $272 million in compensation for late payments. But Al Faisal Holding chairman Sheikh Faisal Bin Qassim Al Thani said at the time that the project was six years behind schedule, and lambasted the contractor’s “mismanagement of these contracts.”
According to the Australian, Leighton will continue working on the project for the next year and a half, and will be paid by its client in phases over that period. In a statement to the newspaper, the company said:
“The client has paid approximately 40 percent of the outstanding monies on the signing of the agreement and will pay a further 20 percent over the next few weeks. The balance of the remaining monies owing will be repaid over the next 18 months following handover of the remaining projects to the client.”
Habtoor Leighton has already completed two phases of work around City Center mall, including building two hotels attached to the commercial complex – the Renaissance Doha and the Courtyard by Marriott.
According to its website, the final phase consists of:
“Construction of the 50 storey, 272 guest room, Shangri-La Hotel Doha; the 50 storey City Center Rotana Hotel with 300 guest rooms and 100 apartments; and the 48-storey Merwebhotel with 256 guest rooms and 97 apartments.”