By Rajkumar Kanagasingam
One might observe when passing Galle Face, the upcoming project Colombo International Financial City (CIFC), is where once the Colombo Port City was planned.
In the coming years another model Dubai or Singapore is yet to be witnessed adjacent to Galle Face. However it is a mega project and several stages are to be implemented applying sophisticated project management techniques to achieve the desired outcome.
Recently at the Arab Islamic American Summit in Saudi Arabia, US President Donald Trump in his speech said, “All over the world people dream of walking through the ruins of Petra in Jordan.” Petra is famous for its rock-cut architecture and water conduit system; it was established nearly 2300 years ago by the Arab nomadic people Nabataeans.
I had a chance to walk through the ruins of Petra and witnessed one of the new seven-wonders of the world a few months ago.
One of the other wonders is the Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt built nearly 4500 years ago. Another man-made wonder: The Roman road network across Europe and North Africa was built nearly 2000 years ago.
One might wonder if the ancient Nabataeans, Egyptians and Romans had implemented such huge projects without any formal project management techniques, why a project like Colombo International Financial City might need one.
Nabataean’s water conduit system, Egyptian’s pyramids and Roman’s road network were big but essentially simple.
The Nabataean Kings, Egyptian Pharaohs and Roman Emperors had enough time, lots of money and unlimited slave labour.
But the Colombo International Financial City project has to be completed within a range of constraints that did not apply to the ancient Nabataeans, Egyptians or Romans.
The CIFC as a modern project has a strictly imposed cost limits and has to be completed within a specific time period. It has to be designed and built in compliance with numerous environmental, health and safety constraints.
There may be certain political and geopolitical factors along with other forces such as changes in
Building Colombo International Financial City project is not like constructing another Roman road network or another Egyptian pyramid, it is very complex and requires advanced project management techniques to be applied at all stages.