One of Doha’s premier shopping locations, City Center Doha (CCD), which was closed for 24 days to put in place better safety measures, reopened for business yesterday.
The City Center, which was closed down on June 15 on instructions of the Directorate of Civil Defence to implement a better safety plan, announced the resumption of its normal operations yesterday afternoon. Soon after the announcement, shoppers started flocking to the center and by evening there were quite a number of customers at the Carrefour Hyper Market and its other outlets. Customers were also seen in front of an exchange house at the complex. Some of the restaurants in the complex were giving finishing touches yesterday evening before resuming operations today.
Speaking to Gulf Times at his office, CCD director Olaf M Kindt said that more than 70% of the outlets at the mall had resumed their functioning soon after the announcement of the reopening, which he said, had been intimated to the tenants earlier in the day.
“Today, close to 100% of all outlets except the Grand Cinema Palace, Fun City and a few other independent outlets, including Ansar Gallery on Level 3, will resume their usual operations,” said Kindt.
The 14-screen multiplex and some other establishments will open after they put in place new safety systems to meet the requirements of the Civil Defence authorities, said the CCD official. Those establishments need to add such safety features to meet their own customers’ requirements, sources said.
The official said that six new emergency exits had been built as part of the updated safety and security measures. Three exits have been built on either side of the main entrance of the center. Two of them on the northern side of the main entrance face the Qatar Financial Centre (QFC) and the third one is near the Queen’s Dental Centre.
The other three exits are located on the other side of the main entrance facing the complex housing the RasGas Towers. The CCD car park, which was shut even before the mall’s closure on June 15, is now operational. Sydney Limousines, the company that operated taxi services from the complex, has resumed its usual services. A number of Karwa Taxis were found at the company’s rank in front of the CCD yesterday evening.
On hearing the news of the reopening, tenants at the complex heaved a sigh of relief. “We received the information (on reopening) in the afternoon and immediately made arrangements for our staff to reach the place, ” one of them said.
Owners of businesses at the center have reportedly suffered huge losses due to the closure of the mall for such a long time. As part of implementing the new safety plan at the place, many outlets on Level 3 have been done away with and more space has been made available to facilitate the movement of the visitors.
source: Gulf Times
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