Dubai unveils the world's longest Metro

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    Dubai’s reputation as a pioneering destination is based on its ability to distinguish itself through constant innovation and its multitude of unique, world-class experiences.

    And, this autumn the emirate’s world-renown will further be consolidated with its latest ground-breaking project: the Dubai Metro. Set to open on 9 September 2009, this will be the longest fully automated rail transport system in the world.

    Dubai is a destination of world-firsts and this latest development will be no exception.

    Developed under the direction of the Dubai Rail and Transport Authority (RTA), Dubai Metro will cater for increasing demands on the emirate. Global visitors reached an all-time high of 7.5 million in 2008 and it remains one of the world’s most popular destinations.

    Ian Scott, director UK and Ireland for the Government of Dubai, Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing (DTCM), commented that:

    ‘Dubai Metro will mark a significant step for this city as it continues to develop as a world-class destination. The Metro will increase circulation and access to some of the top visitor destinations and places of interest that Dubai has to offer as well as offering residents an efficient and affordable means to commute through the city. This is another exciting development for Dubai and will help to provide necessary infrastructure as the number of visitors continues to increase to this growing destination.’

    Dubai already boasts renowned projects including the world’s largest shopping centre, the Dubai Mall and the Burj Dubai, set to be the world’s tallest building when it opens later this year. The Metro will connect key locations across the city such as Burj Dubai, the Burj Al Arab, Emirates Towers and Dubai Marina – in total the Metro will cover a distance of 70 kilometres.

    Dubai Metro will be operated and maintained by Serco, the company behind the Docklands Light Railway in London and the Copenhagen Metro in Denmark and is predicted to carry 1.2 million passengers on an average day. At present two main lines are planned with the Red line opening this September and the Green line opening at the beginning of 2010.

    The Red line will run along the famous Sheikh Zayed Road on an elevated track, adding yet more interest to the urban landscape of Dubai. Further lines are also planned although the opening dates for these are yet to be confirmed. RTA officials are currently in negotiation with international and local companies over naming rights for some of the 43 stations along the two lines.

    This form of corporate branding would be a first of its kind and would help to further strengthen links between Dubai and the international business world.

    Dubai Metro will be accessible to everyone, with commuters encouraged to use its affordable and flexible fare system. A unified card will be introduced, allowing travellers to use all modes of transport – public buses, the metro and water transport – with the same card.

    This is an exciting new venture for Dubai and one that is integral to the emirate’s continued and growing success as a leading visitor destination. Dubai Metro will undoubtedly open new avenues for Dubai’s development and will help to shape the bright future of this remarkable emirate.

    www.ameinfo.com