Under the auspices of HH Sheikh Maktoum bin Mohammed bin Rashid bin Mohammed Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Vice-Chairman of the Executive Council in Dubai, the Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) kicks off today the Public Transport Day initiative whereby the Dubai Metro, public buses and the water bus will be offered free of charge on this day to all holders of Nol cards.
RTA Chairman of the Board and Executive Director H.E. Mattar Al Tayer called on the UAE citizens, residents and tourists to support the initiative and taste the use of mass transit means in Dubai; fitted with the edge-cutting technologies and top-notch safety and security standards.
“The Public Transport Day initiative, which attracts participation of various government authorities and departments as well as private sector entities and different community segments, aims at highlighting the role of Dubai Emirate in supporting the initiatives that contribute to the improvement of the environment, attaining sustained development, encouraging inhabitants to use public transport modes and promoting the modern mass transit means provided by the RTA including the Dubai Metro, public buses and marine transit systems,” said Al Tayer.
He continued, “The initiative also seeks to increase the ridership of mass transit modes, enhance the integration of various public transport modes, showcase the role of Dubai Emirate in general and the RTA in particular in promoting public transportation, diffuse the culture of mass transportation among various community members, and explain the benefits that accrue to individuals from using public transport such as the physical and psychological relief, besides reducing the fuel and maintenance costs let alone the fact that using public transport modes effectively contribute to cutting traffic-related fatalities and curbing carbon emissions from vehicle exhausts.”
“The Dubai Government has invested huge funds in developing mass transit systems in Dubai culminated in the construction and operation of the Dubai Metro on 09/09/2009; which has lifted more than 36 million passengers from the start of operation till the end of October last. The number of metro riders is constantly on the rise since its launch in September 2009 jumping from 1.8 million passengers in October 2009 to 3.3 million passengers in August 2010 recording in the process an increase as high as 83 per cent. Similarly, the average daily ridership of the metro picked up from about 55,000 commuters in October 2009 to touch 130,000 commuters last October and the number is set to clock 140,000 commuters by the end of 2010,” he added.
In the field of public transport, the RTA has improved and broadened the bus services through deploying articulated and double-decker buses; raising the bus fleet to about 1539 buses, besides that RTA has constructed about 900 air-conditioned bus shelters across the Emirate and constructed several bus depots at Al Rawiyyah, Jebel Ali and Al Khawaneej and revamped Al Awir station. These combined efforts have yielded an increase in the number of bus commuters from 96 millions in 1996 to 120 millions by the end of 2009.
“RTA has also carried out a comprehensive renovation of marine transit systems; which were previously restricted to abras. It has retrofitted 149 abras, revamped abra dockyards and marinas, introduced the 36-seater water bus, and launched the water taxi; the latest addition to marine transit modes,” added Al Tayer.
“The most important aspect of mass transit systems in Dubai is the full integration of different transit modes such as the metro, buses and water transport means; which illustrates RTA’s Vision of providing Safe & Smooth Transport for All, and contributes to realizing our strategic goal of migrating from using private vehicles to public transport systems,” said the Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the RTA in a final comment.