RTA to accelerate construction of Al Sufouh Tram project

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Source:  www.wam.ae

Dubai, 2 Apr 2011 (WAM) — The Roads ‘&’ Transport Authority (RTA) is set to accelerate the construction pace of Al Sufouh Tram project, where completion rate of the construction works has now exceeded 30% and the construction company is currently engaged in completing the supporting infrastructure of the project.

The RTA has agreed with the Alstom-Besix Consortium to step up the work tempo in the project; the first stage of which is set for completion in 2014,” said Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the RTA. “Works are currently focused on building the tram’s infrastructure along a corridor stretching from Dubai Marina to Jumeirah city where water and electricity lines in the area have been identified. Work is underway to bypass the utility lines and lay the foundations underpinning the tram rails through which the tram receives power feed,” he stated.

Explaining the salient features of Al Sufouh Tram Al Tayer said, “Al Safouh Tram Project extends 14 km along Al Safouh Road and the initial Phase envisages the construction of a 9.5 km-long track starting from Dubai Marina up to the Mall of the Emirates Station.

The Tram network comprises 19 passenger stations 9 of which are covered under Phase I and spread across activity and population density areas along the tram route. Each train measures 44 meters in length and has a capacity to accommodate about 300 passengers. The fleet consists of 8 trams in Phase I and 17 more will be added in Phase II such that a total of 25 trains will be in place capable of commuting about 5000 passengers per hour per direction.”

The tram track basically extends at-grade level along Al Sufouh Road but rises in an elevated section across certain areas of Dubai Marina for reasons dictated by urban structures of the locality. It passes in a route parallel to the Dubai Metro Red Line and links up with the metro system in three stations along Sheikh Zayed Road where tram stations are linked via footbridges with the metro stations to ease transit and exchange of passengers between the two modes. Al Sufouh Tram will also be linked with the Monorail of the Palm Jumeirah at the entrance of the Palm from Al Sufouh Road to facilitate passenger traffic between districts served by both projects.

Al Sufouh Transit System will be a new addition to the outstanding array of projects witnessed by the emirate of Dubai. The train comprises a First Class carriage (Golden Suite), and another carriage dedicated to women and children in addition to a silver carriage. Carriages will have top class interior finishing at deluxe standards and will be fitted with the latest transmitting and display systems of data and entertainment materials. The design of carriages and stations satisfies the requirements of special needs persons with a view to easing their movement, boarding and alighting from the tram, besides designating certain seating area for them onboard.

The train does not need overhead power supply cables as it will be supplied with a modern and safe ground power cable system, and is fitted with an automated safety ‘&’ protection system ensuring sufficient distance between the rolling stocks to avoid any collision, and all stations will be fitted with central air-conditioning systems.

Al Sufouh Tram is the world’s first tram network that uses platform screen doors fully aligned with the train door opening and shutting mechanism, providing maximum level of convenience, safety and security to passengers, and at the same time maintain the efficiency of air-conditioning quality at the interior of both stations and carriages from external climatic effects. The passenger platform extends 44 meters and is equipped with Automatic Fare Collections systems.

“The Project serves residential and commercial areas along the tramway passing through Al Safouh, Dubai Marina, Jumeirah Beach Residence, Dubai Internet City and Dubai Media City. In recent years these areas witnessed high-end property developments for residential, commercial and tourist purposes.

They encompass prominent commercial and tourist landmarks such as the Mall of the Emirates, Madinat Jumeirah and Burj Al Arab in addition to areas of high significance such as the Knowledge Village, Dubai Media City and Dubai Internet City. Demographic studies of the project revealed that those areas are populated by about 180 thousands residents, 210 thousand workers and 20 thousand visitors. The high population and workers density reflects the importance of the tram project as an initial step in a chain of similar transit modes to cover all high density areas in the emirate,” noted Al Tayer.

He pointed out that RTA is currently working on a study to identify the investment potentials of the project such as the rentable advertising spaces in stations and onboard the train cars through benefiting from the successful experience gained from the leasing of ad space as well as the naming rights of the Dubai Metro stations.