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September October 2019 Marina World

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PROFESSIONAL CONSULTANCY A 3D architectural model proved instrumental in conveying the principles of the masterplan. An important strategic tool at the tender stage is the preliminary business plan. The preliminary business plan is essential to test the viability of the proposal because it becomes the basis for calculating the financial offer that will be made for the concession. Recognising key sensitivities and areas of risk is important as it allows for appropriate qualification of the ultimate financial offer. As is often the case, the concession invitation requested bids in two parts; a technical submission and a financial offer. Within the technical section it was necessary to set out development methodologies, operating structures, etc. but also outline the strategy and steps necessary to obtain all relevant permits/licences from central and regional authorities. In this sense, early client discussion to identify potential issues and pitfalls was important in order to establish an effective and realistic strategy. Local client knowledge can be useful in this area and it is critical that the advisor can extract and direct information to the benefit of the tender submission. In November 2015 the bid documents were submitted in full, complete with a waterfront development masterplan, business plan, estate operating and ownership structures, delivery strategy, policy and consenting strategy. Benefit of specialist advice The well-structured and professional advice provided by Marina Projects helped inform the client of the true opportunity, key risks and ultimately the value of the concession. This led to a well-informed client with confidence to deliver the concession and negotiate the final details of the lease. Importantly, and as intended, the submission demonstrated the level of competency the Government was seeking and confidence in deliverability. In addition to the core requirements of the bid, further benefits were gained through the employment of a professional consultant. In this case, reference is made to the establishment of a company structure that demonstrated, among other things: financing options for the project; mechanisms to deliver the landside development; an operating entity and structure for the marina; and, lastly, definition of the estate management function that would ensure the property was well maintained and managed into the future, thus preserving development value. Ultimately the bid was approved by the Government in early 2016 and the concession awarded to PMV Maritime Holdings Ltd - the delivery vehicle established by Kountouris to develop the Paralimni Marina waterfront scheme. Consenting and approvals Having secured the concession and the rights to develop, attention turned to securing necessary approvals. This is another key area where the breadth of experience of a professional consultant can come to bear and benefit a project. It is often the case that regulatory authorities are more familiar with terrestrial schemes and developing confidence in the regulator that the waterfront/marina project is both acceptable and deliverable can benefit from professional and experienced input. Typical issues, particularly in countries with limited existing marine leisure facilities, include: • The details and nuances of marina operations including navigation requirements • Environmental implications and completion of environmental impact assessment • The ability to mix different users, e.g. introducing leisure vessels into a commercial harbour • The absence of specific regulations for leisure-driven maritime construction, or potential inexperience of the regulators • The absence of internationally accepted design standards for marinas In the case of Paralimni Marina, one route to building confidence with the regulators was to introduce international design codes and their application across a range of previous case studies to demonstrate their suitability and successful implementation. Furthermore, presentation tools such as use of a CGI flythrough video and a 3D architectural model helped communicate the scale, context and subtleties of the waterfront development to both public and governmental stakeholders. Again, these processes were wholly coordinated by the specialist consultant to ensure authenticity and consistency with the developed masterplan. The process of meeting face to face with authorities and providing examples of the design and regulatory approach taken in other regional (i.e. East Mediterranean) projects was welcomed and served to build trust between the respective parties. This in turn has led to significant progress on the necessary approvals and Marina Projects looks forward to progressing the scheme and expanding its role to deal with the specification, procurement and ultimate delivery of the marina, including the establishment of an operating company to take on the marina lease. With a fair wind, construction is scheduled to start this winter. Phil Dunn is technical director at Marina Projects Ltd, UK. - September/October 2019 25

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