Hulhumalé the new emerging City of the Maldives
By Dr Srimal Fernando Asia Correspondent
The spacious Hulhumale Island in the Maldives is one of the ambitious coastal reclamation projects in South Asia. In 1997 this ambitious new island city, reclaiming project was outlined by the Maldivian Government for building additional houses, recreational facilities for the expanding population, industries and for commercial activities in the country.
Hulhumalé coastal reclamation project is a 188 hectare Island. This area was reclaimed especially because of the expanding population of the country. The demand for additional area of land for the 1.77 square kilometer capital city of Male was very high. The man made Hulhumalé Island is situated next to Male Island, the capital of Maldives. The two islands are separated by 1.3 kilometers sea channel. The southern corner of Hulhumalé Island is linked by a 1.8 kilometer causeway to the Hulhule Island where the Male International Airport is situated.
Due to its strategic location, this new island will be a grand gateway to locals, expatriates, businesses and for logistic services operating near the capital city of Male and the international airport of Maldives. Today several thousand more people live in Hulhumalé than in the year 2004, when the island settlement was inaugurated. It is forecasted that by 2020 the population of Hulhumale will increase to about 60,000 people.
The island’s comfortable transport system has already achieved measurable improvements. Today Hulhumale island is served by an internal transport system of 12.5 kilometers of paved road network, bus , taxi and a ferry service that runs regularly between Male’ and the Hulhumale island. According to the Ministry of Housing and Infrastructure of the Maldives, in the Hulhumale Island, there are 125 four storey buildings comprising thousands of housing units completed in November 2012 at an estimated cost of USD 61 million.
The construction of Hulhumale Condominium Villa is a new property development project that has revolutionized the infrastructure facilities in the new island city. The 50 bed Hulhumale' Government Hospital with specialty doctors with dialysis services ,surgery ,pediatrics , gynecology, internal medicine, orthopedics, and dermatology has taken the islands health sector to the fore. Hulhumalé island strategic land-use plan guide includes areas for Local Housing and cultural activities. It will be the island having the largest shopping complex, sports fields, inter-island passenger and cargo transportation and hotel development near the waterfront.
The island is not just admired for its development but also for its beauty and tourist attractions. Among them are the Casuarina tree planted roads, the white sandy beaches, green lagoon and the spacious main mosque that can accommodate 1500 persons and add up to the splendor of the island. The Housing Development Corporation formally known as Hulhumalé Development Corporation (HDC) contributed greatly to the development of the island. In the coming years the new island city of Hulhumalé is poised to become a business operation hub in the Maldives.