x Abu Dhabi, UAEMonday 24 July 2017

RTA works to keep up with Dubai traffic

Traffic congestion could be eased in Dubai as soon as the end of June, when 11 key roadworks projects are due to be finished.

The RTA says the first part of a two-phase plan to turn Al Ittihad Road into an expressway will be completed this month
The RTA says the first part of a two-phase plan to turn Al Ittihad Road into an expressway will be completed this month

DUBAI // Traffic congestion could be eased in Dubai as soon as the end of June, when 11 key roadworks projects are due to be finished. The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is spending Dh3.8 billion (US$1.03bn) on the projects, which include phase one of the busy Ittihad Road, Dubai Bypass Road, the upper deck of the Financial Centre Road, Al Nahda-Beirut Interchange, Mirdif Bridge, Jumeirah Lakes Interchange, Al Barsha road projects and several other roads in the city. The construction has created ­severe congestion all over the city, sparking traffic jams in residential communities such as The Greens, Emirates Hills, Marina and those neighbouring the Dubai-Sharjah border. Several road works in Al Barsha include the widening of Jebel Ali Race Course and a flyover connecting The Greens to Internet City that should be done this month. Key roads in Jumeirah Lakes Interchange located between Fifth and Gardens Interchange serving the Marina, Ibn Battuta Mall, the Gardens and Emirates Hills are to be completed in May, as are road expansions in the Springs and Meadows. Construction work in those communities started in 2006 at a cost of Dh475 million. In June, the Safouh Road project linking Dubai Marina to Beach Road will complete the majority of work at the southern end of the city. Also in June, the RTA will complete the expansion of the Dubai Bypass to six lanes from three in each direction, between the busy outskirts of Sharjah up to Al Rawiyyah Interchange at the Dubai-Al Ain Road, to alleviate heavy traffic on Emirates Road. "RTA is currently undertaking phase four of Dubai Bypass Road in a six-lanes sector in each direction, extending 25km from Jebel Ali-Al Hebab Road up to the entrance of the emirate of Abu Dhabi," said Mattar al Tayer, the RTA's chairman and executive director. "It also offers motorists coming from the Northern emirates heading towards Abu Dhabi and vice versa an external traffic line without having to go downtown." The first of a two-phase plan to turn Al Ittihad Road into an expressway will be completed this month with the opening of two underpasses at the Galadari intersection and the expansion of the motorway to six lanes from four. "Considering the immense nature of Al Ittihad Road-widening project, which carries a cost tag of Dh800m, and as RTA is keen to deliver it in a record time to ease traffic on this vital arterial road, the project was divided into two separate contracts," Mr al Tayer said. "It included widening works extending 5.7km, starting from Sheikh Rashid Road, crossing al Garhoud Bridge and extending to Al Sho'ala Interchange." By the end of February the RTA will open Dhiyafa and Al Mina Roads Interchange, costing Dh121m. The project includes widening Al Mina Road in a sector extending to four lanes in each direction, in addition to improvements to the intersection of Al Mina Road with Dhiyafa and Al Wasl Road. It includes a 45-metre pedestrian subway in front of the Dry Dock Gate at Port Rashid. Construction on the Dh605m upper-deck flyover of the Financial Centre Road that passes between Burj Dubai and Dubai Mall will also be finished in June. It will include a three-lane motorway towards Jumeirah and five lanes in the direction of the Business Bay Crossing and Al Khail Road serving Nad al Sheba, Al Ain and Emirates roads. "In June, Mirdiff Bridge upgrade project, which costs about Dh236m, will be opened and the project comprises improvement of the existing Bridge at the Al Khawaneej-Algiers Roads Junction separating Murdiff from Muhaisneh," Mr al Tayer said. The old bridge is being replaced by a flyover interchange and a wider Al Khawaneej Road. This month the RTA will also complete the construction and expansion of various local roads in the emirate, such as the Oud Mateenah Two Road, costing Dh50m. Both Amman and Khartoum Roads will have extra lanes added while Al Nahdah Two will be opened at a cost of Dh118m. It is also hoped the Al Nahda-Beirut Interchange and the construction of Amman Road linking Al Nahda One and Two can be finished in the first half of the year. shafez@thenational.ae