Dubai: Etihad Rail, the developer and operator of the UAE National Rail Network, has completed the longest tunnel in the Gulf. Running up to 1.8 kilometres, the tunnel is part of Package D on Stage Two of the network’s development.
Package D runs for 145 kilometres from Dubai and Sharjah, through the Al Hajar Mountains, towards Fujairah. This includes construction of nine tunnels through the mountains at a cumulative length of 6.9 kilometres, and additionally includes 54 bridges and 20 animal crossings. The new tunnel excavation achievement is an significant step for the project’s development in 2021.
The route passes through some of the most complex topographical areas in the construction of the network. In total, the completion of the tunnel contributes to ensuring development continues to be on schedule. The UAE National Rail Network is on schedule, with track laying having recently commenced at Saih Shuaib, which is the railhead for track running toward Abu Dhabi and Dubai as part of Stage Two.
The overall track on Stage Two will run from Ghuweifat on the border of Saudi Arabia to the emirate of Fujairah on the UAE’s eastern seaboard.