Muscat Addressing

Muscat Governorate is one of eight governorates/regions in the Sultanate of Oman and covers an area of approximately 3700 km2. It is estimated that the governorate has about 3300 km of roads.

NORPLAN has been awarded a contract to develop a new addressing system for Muscat Governorate in the Sultanate of Oman. The Client, Muscat Municipality, intends to implement the new system in Muscat first and then roll it out to the remaining governorates and regions in the country.

As in many other Arabic cities, Muscat has an existing addressing system which is little used. People prefer giving directions by providing references to landmarks, establishments and locally known reference points rather than providing their street address. A study conducted by Muscat Municipality in 2007 suggests that as few as 10% of citizens are familiar with the existing system. This is partially due to the complexity and structure of the systems and partially due to limited awareness. The numbering principles applied in the existing system are also not able to absorb the urban growth of Muscat and the need for a solution to this problem is pressing.

With more than 40 years of experience in urban development projects, NORPLAN is well experienced in making addressing systems – and with our long-running project in Abu Dhabi, in neighboring United Arab Emirates, NORPLAN has also gained unique experience in implementing a new addressing systems in an existing city. NORPLAN has also gained insight into the specific factors which must be taken into consideration when addressing Arabic cities such as the co-existence of Arabic and Latin alphabets, naming practices and decision making structures.

“This is a prestigious but very challenging project which requires the involvement and buy-in of many stakeholders. We are very happy to have won this contract, now a lot of hard but interesting work lies ahead”, says Runar Bergheim, NORPLANs team leader for the project, “division and naming of areas as well as naming of streets is something that people have strong views on.”

The scope of the project is to propose a new addressing system which will provide government, businesses and residents a quick and precise way of giving directions and which is capable of accommodating future urban growth and subsequently replace the old addressing system with the new one.

“The addressing project is seen as a strategic way forward for the newly established Oman branch of NORPLAN and comes in addition to the major task of developing a Re-development Master Plan for Mutrah, one of the oldest and most interesting parts of Muscat”, says Olav Hauge, Regional Manager for NORPLAN in Oman, “through these projects we will demonstrate the capabilities of NORPLAN and attract more business in the region”

The project started on the 8th of October and will finish in July 2012 in accordance with the project plan.

Doha construction (photo: Amjra)

NORPLAN together with a consortium of Norwegian companies prepared a master plan concept for Greater Doha, Qatar as well as detailed plans for downtown Doha. The detailed plan focussed on redevelopment of the city centre, the master plan comprised a proposed structural plan for the metropolitan area.

East Jerusalem from the Mount of the Olives (photo: Wayne McLean)

The purpose of the project was to develop the Directorate for Urban and Rural Planning in the Ministry of Planning. The main objectives of the project were: 1) Institution building, 2) Physical planning, and 3) Training. The Institutional building spanned both the internal organisational development with the ministry and development of the institutional relationships to other ministries and external entities. A major task was to prepare regional plans for the West Bank and Gaza, and to develop structural plans for three larger cities (Gaza City, Jericho and Ramallah/Al Bireh). The training part consisted of  on-the-job training, locally conducted specialised courses and a Masters Programme for 10 candidates at the Oslo School of Architecture. In addition, NORPLAN assisted in developing the GIS section within the Ministry of Planning.

Abu Dhabi from Space (photo, NASA 2003)

NORPLAN is consultant for the update of fundamental geospatial data for Abu Dhabi Municipality, supervising establishment of geodetic infrastructure and aerial photography, orthophoto creation and vectorization into a purpose-made Enterprise GIS data model.

Mutrah Redevelopment Master Plan Contract

January 1st, 2011 | Posted by (Stein) Runar Bergheim in Reference projects - (Comments Off)
Mutrah Corniche, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman
Mutrah Corniche, Muscat, Sultanate of Oman

Mutrah Corniche, Governorate of Muscat

NORPLAN through partner Asplan Viak has been appointed Consultant for the Mutrah Redevelopment Master Plan by Muscat Municipality in the Sultanate of Oman.

As one of the oldest district Mutrah is the historical and cultural heart of Muscat. It houses some of the oldest oldest souqs, mosques and forts as well as the Sultan Qaboos Port, the city’s major harbour.

“As Mutrah has no existing sewerage system but very narrow roads, often less than 2 meters wide, designing a water and sewerage system will be interesting as well as technically challenging. NORPLAN has a successful track record in delivering water and waste water projects around the world and we look forward to assisting on this very important project to the sustainability of the City and well-being of the people of Mutrah”, says project director Olav Hauge.

The consortium will be led by NORPLAN, and includes the companies WSP and the German University of Technology in Oman.

The project has two main phases. In the first phase NORPLAN will prepare policies and overall proposals, and then in the second phase prepare conceptual design which will be the basis for subsequent detailed planning.

Together with the consortium, NORPLAN has extensive experience from urban planning projects in the region including the “Physical Planning and Institution Building Project” in Palestine.

For more information about the project, please contact NORPLAN`s division manager for urban planning and development, Tor Gunnar Øverli at or project director Olav Hauge at

Mutrah by night (photo:

On assignment from the Ministry of National Economy, NORPLAN laid the foundation for the establishment of a national GIS authority whereby the whole government sector will benefit from Oman’s GIS investments integrating into the national e-Governance policy.