By Shane McGingley www.arabianbusiness.com
Properties located near Dubai Metro stations have not seen the expected hike in rental rates that was initially anticipated when the new transport network opened in September last year, a Dubai-based real estate executive told Arabian Business.
“Since the metro came onboard it is fantastic but I expected the prices to be higher for the areas that the metro was but it doesn’t seem to have happened,” Leah James, a manager of residential sales and leasing at the Better Homes real estate agency, said on Sunday.
James said she had expected rental rates for properties near the metro stations to rise by at least AED10,000 ($2,722.87) a year but that they were only seeing small rises of an average of around $5,000 ($1,361.43) at most.
She added that she believes this is the case because most people who use the metro live in the outskirts of Dubai and white collar, Western expat workers are still opting to use their cars and are therefore not willing to pay higher rates to live near the stations.
“Prices next to the metro line are too high for people who use the metro,” she said.
However, she was confident that when all the metro stations are open it might have more of an impact, especially in Dubai Marina.
The remaining works on the stations on the ¨ will be completed in April 2010, and all works in the stations on the Green Line will be completed in August 2011, a senior official from Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) announced in a press release last month.
Mattar Al Tayer, chairman of the board and executive director of RTA said that the contractor of the Dubai Metro Project; Dubai Rail Link (DURL) Consortium; is set to complete all the remaining works on the Red Line (18 stations) on April 25 this year.
All works in the stations on the Metro’s Green Line will be completed in August 2011, he added.
“The operation of Red Line stations will be in phases starting from April 25th, 2010; where several key stations will be operational; namely Emirates Station, Airport Terminal 1 Station, GGICO Station, Al Karama Station, World Trade Center Station, Marina Station, and Ibn Battuta Station. The remaining stations will be operated over the following months of 2010” Al Tayer said.
More than 842,000 people used Dubai’s public transport systems a day on average last year, official figures reveal.
The number is set to rise in 2010 with the full opening of the Metro’s Red Line next month.
About 35 million passengers are forecast to travel on Dubai Metro this year.