Dubai Metro, the worlds longest automated driverless train system built in just 4 years. The Metro was launched by His Highness Sheikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, at 9pm on 9th September 2009 at the Mall of the Emirates station.
The Metro System is to ease congestion, save travelling time, reduce air pollution, and deliver a modern and safe mode of transportation. Ten stations are currently opened so far but by February 2010, 29 stations will be operating on the Red Line with 24 elevated, 4 underground and 1 at grade (street level).
The 10 stations opened are Rashidiya, Airport Terminal 3, Deira City Center, Al Rigga, Union, Khaleed bin Al Waleed, Al Jafiliya, DIFC, Mall of the Emirates and Nakheel Harbour and Tower.
Each 5-car train can accommodate 643 passengers with a peak capacity of 897. There are 142 seats per train.
The speed of the trains in automatic mode can run from 45-90 kph, but this depends on the track section. Besides special cars for women and children, there are two seating classes — Gold Class, which is situated upfront, basically offers 18 deluxed seats with more space, higher levels of privacy, luggage space and leather seating, while Silver Class is the standard 25-27 seats.
The system is expected to cater to about 600,000 passengers per day; 1.8 million per year within its first year of operations. By 2020, the number is expected to rise to about 1.8 million per day; over 650 million per year.