x Abu Dhabi, UAEThursday 27 July 2017

Sheikh Khalifa Interchange connects Ajman to the rest of UAE

Progress UAE: The original flyover was torn down and rebuilt into what is now the biggest road interchange of its kind in the emirate, with several connecting roads linking Ajman with the rest of the UAE.

Shamsudin Ahmed, who owns  Noor Al Kawthar Saloon, says working close to such a prestigious project “reinforces my address”. Lee Hoagland / The National
Shamsudin Ahmed, who owns Noor Al Kawthar Saloon, says working close to such a prestigious project “reinforces my address”. Lee Hoagland / The National

AJMAN // The Sheikh Khalifa Interchange was among the first projects to benefit from an ambitious plan to develop Northern Emirates infrastructure.

Work on the improved road network, formerly named after the surrounding area Al Hamidiya,  started in March 2011, with construction completed in February this year at a cost of about Dh300 million.

Dr Abdullah Al Nuaimi, under secretary of the Ministry of Public Works, said the project was part of the Dh16 billion plan announced by the President, Sheikh Khalifa, to develop the region.

The original flyover was torn down and rebuilt into what is now the biggest junction of its kind in the emirate, with several connecting roads linking Ajman to the rest of the nation.

When it was opened this year, officials renamed it after the President.

The junction has been praised for helping to ease traffic on the emirate’s busiest roads.

“The Sheikh Khalifa Road and Sheikh Zayed Road, the two main highways in the emirate, were always congested in the mornings and evenings,” said Abu Maryam, a resident of Ajman.

“It would take about 30 minutes to drive through it.

“Now with the opening of this bridge, it takes simply five minutes.”

People living close to the junction welcomed an end to the disruption caused by building, and the ease at which traffic was now able to flow.

Shamsudin Ahmed, who owns Noor Al Kawthar Saloon opposite the bridge, said he was happy to work so close to such a large and prestigious development.

“It reinforces my address. Working opposite the biggest bridge in the emirate is so cool,” Mr Ahmed said.

“Earlier on the neighbourhood was remote but was now rapidly changed into an urban city.

“And even though the business is still down, these developments will bring better business soon.”

ykakande@thenational.ae