twofour54 says that its Yas Creative Hub – “the home for Abu Dhabi’s media, gaming and entertainment sector” (sectors?) – has reached 95 percent completion and the first units will be ready to hand over to tenants by the end of this year.
Yas Creative Hub, a 270,000m2 development in the Yas Bay area on the southern edge of the island, is being developed under Abu Dhabi’s AED 30 billion investment strategy for the Culture and Creative Industries. Its five medium-rise towers and infill buildings are due to provide a locus for a threefold growth in jobs in Abu Dhabi’s creative industry; the total expected to reach 16,000 by 2031, though it seems likely to beat that target.
Certainly twofour54 seems very happy with progress: as well as the 95 percent mark for the total development, fully 93 percent of the rentable space is already leased. The target is for more than 600 businesses setting up there, 270 of them expected to be the start-ups and SMEs that provide the innovation in media and gaming.
Michael Garin, CEO of twofour54, has been quoted as saying “what we’ve been trying to do for the past 10 years is build a self-sustaining ecosystem here in Abu Dhabi”. Yas Creative Hub is central to that; it’s been designed by MZ Architects, the Abu Dhabi studio that is also responsible for Aldar’s HQ, and the emphasis is very much on video and gaming in terms of onsite facilities – 5,500m2 of production and post-production facilities, six fully-equipped broadcast studios, and an AD Gaming Hub created with Unity Technologies that will provide training and support to developers.
This sits in a fully walkable, landscaped campus that includes coffee shops and restaurants, “wellness facilities”, a park and an outdoor amphitheatre, and direct pedestrian access to Yas Bay Waterfront looking back towards the mainland. Etihad Arena is also close by.
Many of the new tenants are relocating from the existing twofour54 campus by Khalifa Park; that’s a 20 minute drive away, but Yas Bay is nearer to the airport and a bit more convenient for Dubai. Besides, twofour54 itself is moving its main offices to Yas.
Those also making the trip include macomms firms Brunswick and Edelman, the Eton Institute training centre, production company Bidaya Media, the Korean Cultural Centre, the local office of dmg events, and game maker Ubisoft. The big coup for the real estate agents is probably the arrival of Abu Dhabi Media, which is relocating its headquarters from downtown Abu Dhabi to Yas Creative Hub.