Dubai road projects to be ready in two years

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    Dubai: Road projects in Dubai are expected to be completed in two years and it will cater to a population increase up to eight million people, a senior official has said.

    Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), said that the RTA has completed between 40 to 50 per cent of road projects in Dubai and the primary phases are expected to be completed after two years.

    Al Tayer said the RTA has been able to reduce Dubai’s losses due to traffic congestion from Dh5.9 billion to Dh4 billion, which is a 32 per cent change.

    He said this reflects the success achieved by the strategic plan to develop the road and transportation system despite the fact that the metro and tram have not yet started.In a programme aired on Dubai TV last Thursday, Al Tayer said the traffic movement here has not been affected by the global recession. This is evident by the constant increase in the number of cars being registered from 350,000 cars when the RTA was established to 1.1 million cars currently. This is an increase of 17 per cent compared to other countries.

    He said even Salik and revenue from taxis have not declined, which indicates that the number of vehicles have not decreased.

    Indicators show recession has not had much of an effect on transportation network, he said.

    The RTA has not cancelled or shelved any project but has reprogrammed their schedules, he added. “The improvement felt by people here regarding the decline in traffic congestion is due to the success of our road projects and development of public transportation.

    “The number of public transportation passengers increased from 75 million when RTA was established to 100 million passengers,” said Al Tayer.

    The strategic plan, however, aims to increase the percentage of public transportation users from the current 6 per cent to 30 per cent by 2020.

    According to Al Tayer, the budget allocated for road development is Dh37 billion and out of that, Dh18 billion has already been spent on current projects while Dh19 billion will be spent on the completion of other projects.

    “The RTA will spend Dh2.5 billion on road and transportation projects during the year. The Dh12.3 billion RTA budget for this year is the highest among other Dubai Government departments,” said Al Tayer.

    Talking about the Dubai Metro network, he said work is being carried out with the highest standards.

    According to him, the metro tariff will be affordable for everyone and will be divided into three classes.

    There will also be a unified card to use all modes of public transportation in addition to an online system which will help passengers specify the routes to their destinations. “We will have the biggest metro station – Al Ittihad station – which is built on 25,000 sq km. One of the other big stations will be the BurJuman one,” he said.

    According to him, the Salik toll system has helped in decreasing the traffic congestion on Al Maktoum and Al Garhoud bridges by 30 per cent. The average speed of vehicles on those roads has also increased by 20 per cent.

    He declined to specify whether there are any immediate plans to install more toll gates, but said that if there are any plans for Salik gates or any infrastructure it was purely for improvement of the road network and not to increase revenue.

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