Shaikh Mohammad being briefed about the tram project by Mattar Al Tayer. Shaikh Maktoum Bin Mohammad BIn Rashid Al Maktoum, Deputy Ruler of Dubai and Engineer Maitha Bin Udai, CEO of RTA Traffic and Roads Agency, are present. Image Credit: WAM

Dubai: Creek Panorama, a pedestrian bridge project that will enable people to cross Dubai Creek on foot from Bur Dubai to Shindagha, has been approved by His Highness Shaikh Mohammad Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai.

Shaikh Mohammad approved the project during a visit to the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) headquarters that saw him review a number of key projects.

Shaikh Mohammad was shown an artist’s impression of the 120-metre Creek Panorama, which will stand at an elevation of 17 metres above the water.

The pedestrian bridge, besides being another unique landmark of the emirate, is projected to generate commercial opportunities in the form of shops and kiosks.

Shaikh Mohammad was briefed by RTA’s CEO and executive director Mattar Al Tayer on a number of other projects including the Dubai Tram in Al Sufouh, the Business Bay Canal extension, and a residential complex for Dubai Police.

During his visit, Shaikh Mohammad approved the names of the stations that will be part of the Dubai Tram project, which is expected to be operational by November 2014.

The first phase of the 14-km Dubai Tram project, which will operate along Al Sufouh Road, will serve residents from Dubai Marina to Nakheel with 11 stations namely Jumeirah Beach Residence 1, Jumeirah Beach Residence 2, Jumeirah Lakes Towers, Dubai Marina Mall, Dubai Marina, Marina Towers, Mina Al Seyahi, Media City, Palm Jumeirah, Knowledge Village, and Al Sufouh.

The Dubai Tram will run on a path parallel to the Dubai Metro Red Line and will then link up with the Red Line’s Dubai Marina and Mall of the Emirates stations through footbridges. It will also ensure interconnectivity with the monorail at the Palm Jumeirah. The fleet will start off with eight trams in the first phase, with 17 more to be added in the second phase.

The trams, each measuring 44 metres, can carry an estimated 300 passengers at a time, and will serve about 3,500 passengers per hour. This number will increase to 5,000 once the second phase is completed.

Trams will run on underground electricity supply as opposed to overhead cables.

The RTA last week announced that about half of the first phase of the tram project has been completed while the remaining part will be finished by next year.

During his visit, Shaikh Mohammad was also briefed on the Business Bay Canal extension project which is projected to begin by the first quarter of next year. The Dh1.5-billion project will extend the canal right up to the Arabian Gulf. The canal will cut across a section of Shaikh Zayed Road and areas like Safa Park, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah 2, and Jumeirah Road, before terminating in the Arabian Gulf.

The canal’s width will span between 80-100 metres to allow for the navigation of various means of marine transport.

Al Tayer also briefed Shaikh Mohammad on the Dh390-million residential complex for Dubai Police in Oud Matina. The project includes 322 villas in an area of 177,000 square metres. The villas will replace the old police quarters in Al Qusais, where the Dubai Metro Green Line’s Depot was constructed.

Shaikh Mohammad also visited an educational show organised by RTA under the theme ‘Safe Driving, More Fun’. The show aims at educating the public and private school students on the optimal and safe use of bikes.