Abu Dhabi: Residents of Abu Dhabi plan to visit Dubai more often after the launch of the metro in the city.
Khalid H.A.K. Al Shehi, an Emirati working as a strategic planning manager in a government organisation, plans to drive from Abu Dhabi, leave his car at the Ibn Battuta Mall station and get on to the metro from there.
“I think I can leave my car at the metro station. It will change the culture of the city as more people will be encouraged to use public transportation,” Al Shehi said. “When trains with compartments for families are introduced, more people will use them.”
Kathleen O’Reilly, an English teacher from Canada, said she would visit Dubai more often once the metro is introduced.
“Now I don’t visit Dubai so often because of the heavy traffic,” she said. She believes the situation will change when the Metro starts operating. She suggested providing enough parking spaces at metro stations, so that Abu Dhabi residents can leave their cars there.
Mujeeb Rahman, an Indian, said the metro will improve the air quality in Dubai as the number of cars on the roads will decline. “Salik could then be stopped,” he said.
Rahman added that his travel time in Dubai could come down by 50 per cent if he uses the metro. He plans to take the metro from Jebel Ali, while coming from Abu Dhabi. He also suggested starting a bus service from Abu Dhabi to the nearest metro station in Dubai.
Simon Shaw, a project manager from Australia, said he would definitely use the metro when visiting Dubai from Abu Dhabi. He also plans to park his car at the nearest metro station and use the train.
“It will save time and reduce traffic congestion,” Shaw said.
Ita Sarosa, an, Indonesian housewife, said her image of Dubai as a crowded city may change when the metro starts.
“If the service has sufficient frequency, it will be really beneficial,” she said.
Prisca, an Indian secretary, said the metro will allow her to visit her daughter in Dubai more often. “Now I visit her once a a week only because of the heavy traffic,” she said.
Dedicated parking lot
Dubai: Visitors from Abu Dhabi can park their cars at the dedicated parking lot being built at the Jumeirah Islands Station on Shaikh Zayed Road.
The Rail Agency of the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) is building a huge parking lot with a capacity to accommodate 2,000 cars at the Jumeirah Islands station located between Ibn Battuta Mall and the Dubai Marina stations while coming from Abu Dhabi towards Dubai.
Parking for metro users will be free, a RTA official confirmed.
The RTA is building two more parking lots – one each at Al Rashidiya and Al Qusais stations – with a capacity of 2,700 and 3,000 cars respectively as part of its policy to provide ‘park and ride’ facility to metro users.
The three major parking complexes are being built at strategic locations with two of them in close proximity to Emirates Road to make it easier for motorists coming from Sharjah and other Northern Emirates.
The dedicated parking lot will also serve the metro users from the Dubai Marina, Jumeriah Lake Towers, Discovery Gardens and other new localities.
The official said only metro ticket holders would be able to use the special parking areas at the three stations.
“There is also plenty of parking available near the Ibn Battuta Mall, Jebel Ali Industrial, Dubal and Jebel Ali Free Zone stations. The Jebel Ali Free Zone Station will be the first one while coming from Abu Dhabi.”
The RTA is building the 74-km long automated driverless metro system consisting of two lines – the Red and the Green lines. The 52.1 km long Red Line linking Jebel Ali with Rashidiya passing through Shaikh Zayed Road, Karama, Bur Dubai, Deira and Dubai International Airport will start in September.