- Mohammad Mumtaz Ahsan, Manager-Trading, General Development Services LLC
Established over two and a half decades ago, General Development Services (GDS) is a multi-national company with its operations spread across different countries specialising in the field of landscaping, irrigation, maintenance, trading of agricultural products, pest control services, plant nurseries, fountain systems, etc. Mohammad Mumtaz Ahsan, Manager-Trading, General Development Services LLC, shares more on the company´s offerings.
Introduce us to the current demand and market in this area of specialisation in Oman. There is a huge demand and market in the field of corporate garden landscaping, irrigation and maintenance. Over the last two and a half decades, immense growth has been witnessed in the demand and market. Today, these areas of expertise are being implemented not just at an organisational level but individual level as well. People have started implementing landscaping, irrigation and maintenance systems at their personal farm houses and villas. As a result, several small and medium sized startups are being established, which focus on these areas of work. Additionally, this field is among the largest in Oman employing one of the largest workforces from across the world. The Oman Government has ensured that people enjoy a green environment that is pollution-free and healthy.
How has your experience been working with corporate, municipals and the government for landscaping projects?
The experience has been amazing and a rewarding one. In our pursuit for perfection, GDS has kept its designing tradition as an expression of excellence for every project. Our intention has always been to offer best eco-friendly solutions and it has been a pleasure serving the three organisational bodies. Our competitive and professional approach has proudly left its mark on plenty of corporate, municipal and government landscaping projects because we do not differentiate between the bodies. Wherever there is an opportunity to serve the people in our area of expertise, we look forward to that project´s implementation.
As landscape architects, at what stage of the project do you step in? What is the process you follow to offer the client design and services?
We keep track of various development projects being executed or planned in the Sultanate in our field of expertise. This enables us to follow a proactive approach towards any landscaping project rather than it being a reactive one! That said, we are actively involved in landscaping projects right from stage one, which involves enquiry or the tender floated by organisations for such landscaping project needs.
Further, we emphasise on continuous research to offer our clients the latest and most innovative landscaping solutions; clubbing the best in technology and design, we offer an eco-friendly landscaping solution. Our process includes the ´master plan´ followed by the ´executive plan´ both of which are prepared with the AutoCAD software combined with 3D visualisations to give our clients the look and feel of the final output in accordance with their vision. Moreover, we give preference to native plants such as the date palms, which not only reflects the traditional lifestyle of Oman but also results in the implementation being a sustainable one.
Introduce us to your prominent clients and your services offered to some of the prestigious projects.
Our team of over 600 professionally trained employees having unique capabilities gives us the flexibility to confidently handle challenging, multifaceted projects of varying sizes and styles. Some of the latest large scale implementations in the Oman, where our services have been offered, includes The Grand Mosque of Oman, The Royal Opera House, Sultan Qaboos University, Bank Muscat headquarters, Sultan Qaboos sports complex, Duqm port, Salalah Airport and various embassies such as The British Embassy, the US Embassy, etc.
Do you offer any kind of maintenance services along with your design?
GDS has several maintenance projects such as landscaping, irrigation, electrical and civil. Depending on the client´s needs, the project implementation at times includes maintenance services for a period of one to four years. In other cases, we go through the tendering process to win various maintenance projects. The process of tender evaluation is not only based on the price, but quality of previous project executed, size and standard of the company.
What are the major execution challenges faced by you?
One major challenge is the time constraint. Also, the climatic condition of Oman, which is both hot and humid affects the speed of project implementation. Various other challenges include shortage and salinity of water, demand for products not available in the local market, etc. However, in any situation, we ensure that our employees do not face the heat alone.
It is these challenges and our strong determination to fight them that places us above the rest.
How do you promote green and sustainable practices through your design and services?
We are committed towards the usage and development of eco-friendly products and method of work that includes optimum usage and conservation of natural resources. Our designs are inspired by nature, and this in turn, inspires not just our clients but several others. Additionally, the government provides us with all the necessary support in our endeavor.