His Excellency Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA), has revealed that RTA mass transit means, comprising the Dubai Metro, public buses, marine transit modes and taxis, have lifted more than 332 million passengers in 2010, compared to 288.777 million passengers in 2009. The average number of daily riders in 2010 was about 957 thousand persons compared to 800 thousand persons in 2009. This number is likely to increase with the completion of the remaining metro stations on the Red Line, and the operation of the Green Line; which will be completed on schedule in August 2011.
“Targeting to realize multi-modal integration of mass transit systems as envisaged in the RTA Strategic Plan; which is aligned with the Dubai Strategic Plan (Infrastructure Sector) aimed at providing an integrated road & transport system that ensures smooth traffic flow and the highest levels of safety for all system users, RTA is making expeditious efforts to make the public transport means the ideal mobility choice for people in the Emirate. This will also achieve one of the strategic objectives of the RTA i.e. curtailing the use of private vehicles, and raising the use of public transport means from 6 per cent in 2009 to 30 per cent in 2020” said Al Tayer noting that last year public transport share was about 11 per cent.
He continued: “The number of public bus users in 2010 clocked 113 million passengers with a daily ridership of about 314 thousand passengers. The number of passengers using marine transit means, comprising abras and the water bus, was about 15.35 million passengers with abras ferrying about 42 thousand passengers per day and the water bus lifting about 877 passengers per day.
“The Dubai Metro has lifted about 38.888 million passengers in 2010 and the average daily rider-ship of the metro is currently hovering around 149 thousand passengers and this number is poised to increase with the opening of the remaining metro stations on the Red Line. The metro ridership is set to receive a big boost in the second half of this year with the operation of the Green Line as it serves vital areas with bustling business and government activities and huge population density.
“Last year, taxis in Dubai Emirate made about 225,500 trips per day serving about 451 thousand persons, and the total number of trips made by taxis in 2010 was about 82.3 million trips lifting about 164.7 million passengers.
“The huge investments pumped by the Government of Dubai to uplift the infrastructure of transportation sector has paid dividends and proved effective. The increase in the number of mass transit means users reflect an improvement in the culture of using public transport by all segments of the community, and the drive was particularly helped by the metro service. Using mass transportation has a host of benefits that include providing physical & psychological comfort to the user, minimizing crashes, economizing on the fuel & maintenance costs of private vehicles and ridding the public from the hassles of finding parking spaces for their vehicles; which has become a challenge facing modern cities worldwide. Besides that, the use of public transportation effectively reduces environmental pollution resulting from the use of massive numbers of private vehicles; which triggers many ailments including respiratory system illnesses.
“RTA is always seeking to upgrade its work mechanism through a number of innovative solutions and strategic initiatives run in the context of its vision of providing Safe and Smooth Transport for All. On the first of November last, RTA launched the Public Transport Day offering Nol card holders free rides on the Dubai Metro, public buses and the Water Bus for one day, and the number of commuters using the metro, public buses and the Water Bus clocked 606,390 persons on that day; reflecting a 39 per cent rise from the average number of commuters at that time. RTA will continue upgrading the services offered to the public in keeping with the regional and global profile of Dubai in the commercial, economic, service, financial, property, and tourist sectors among others,” said Al Tayer in a concluding statement.