Al Ain: The Al Ain-Dubai Road, the vital artery linking the two cities, has been converted into a four-lane dual carriage expressway following the completion of a Dh1.1 billion development and reconstruction project.

The 54-kilometre stretch of road from the Al Hilli Roundabout to the town of Al Faqaa was declared fully open to traffic on Sunday following the expansion and upgrade which began in 2007. It will be formally inaugurated by Shaikh Tahnoun Bin Mohammad Al Nahyan, the Ruler's Representative in the Eastern Region of Abu Dhabi emirate.

Abdullah Hamdan Al Ameri, Executive Director for roads and infrastructure at Al Ain Municipality, said the project has been completed. The municipality, he said, launched an intensive drive to modernise this vital road to meet future traffic requirements.

Green initiative

The project was launched to convert the then two-lane dual carriageway into a four-lane motorway up to the border of Dubai.

The road already has a three-lane dual carriage- way in Dubai's territory from Al Foaa onwards. The maximum speed limit of 140km/h has been specified on the Al Ain section of the road and radars have been set to catch those driving at speeds above 160km/h. The maximum speed limit on the three-lane Dubai section of the road is still 120km/h.

The Al Ain section has been widened with an additional two lanes in each direction. Enough space has also been provided for the construction of a fifth lane in future on both sides of the road.

Abdul Rahman Al Shateeri, project manager, said the work was completed in two stages. A new environment-friendly lighting system has also been installed on the road.