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Thursday, July 29, 2021

Reports: City Center mall opening delayed until Saturday, at least

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City Center mall will likely be closed for at least one more Friday, local media reports.

That’s because Qatar’s largest mall is still working to meet the safety requirements it was shut down for flouting, employees told Arab and English media.

Gulf Times reports:

“Only on Saturday, can we confirm if the City Center Doha would be ready for reopening or not,” said a staffer. Until then no visitors would be allowed inside the complex, he said.

Inquiries found that tenants at the complex could visit the place and help out the security personnel in their inspections, if they are asked to do so.

Yesterday, Landmark mall – the last mall standing, in some people’s opinions – closed its cinema for safety violations. But employees there told Doha News that the mall itself would remain open in the near future.

Rampant non-compliance

Authorities shut down City Center last Friday, saying it failed to meet emergency and fire safety standards.

The move followed a Villaggio fire investigation report that decried non-compliance of safety standards in major public spaces, and warnings from government officials that they would be stepping up enforcement in the coming weeks.

The closure was greeted with equal parts of dismay and applause from Doha residents, some of whom made the trek out to the mall before realizing it was shut.

Months ago, City Center closed its main food court for repairs after an eatery there caught on fire earlier this year.

Mall officials say they are currently working to install a louder alarm system, better emergency lighting and a central control room to monitor the entire mall through CCTV.

Which begs the question – will it really open this weekend?

Credit: Photo courtesy of City Center’s Facebook page

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