The Roads and Transport Authority recently increased the frequency of Metro trains and announced express services.
'Emirates24|7' went out to discover what more does the Dubai Metro user want done. Below are some of the issues they highlighted
Connectivity from and to the Metro can be a problem. Although some Metro stations are served by numerous buses (think of Khalid bin Al Waleed), other stations are better reached by a long and hot walk.
Mary from the Philippines work in Media City. The nearest Metro station is Nakheel. Although there are buses departing from Nakheel, they do not come anywhere close to her office. “I walk to my office and it takes me 20 minutes,” says Mary.
“In the winter I do not mind the walk. But in summer it is a disaster.
I arrive at work completely soaked. This is not very hygienic either.”
At other stations there are buses, but the frequency of these buses is very low. On top of that there are no bus shelters to wait for the bus. Walking becomes the better option. “When I want to wait for the bus I should stand outside in the heat for 15 minutes, while the walk from the station to my office takes 20 minutes,” tells Yvette who works in Business Bay. “Now I found out about a bus that stops very close to my house in Bur Dubai and stops near my office. I stopped taking the Metro and I take the bus now.”
The first Metro run
A considerable number of people would be served with earlier Metro times. When RTA earlier this week announced the launch of two express trains that would serve the early workers, people responded that its 5.30am and 5.40am take-offs were still not early enough.The preferred time for the Metro to start is, for many people, 5am. “Please start at 5am as many employees are starting morning shift at 6am,” wrote one person.
In the office of a local news website this is confirmed. “Many of us start the shift at 6am, but when commuting by Metro this can be difficult. Some of us have no other option than to drop in after six,”tells Indian Mahindra.
Although it has not yet come into being, per October this year Dubai Metro users will see an addition to the regular Metro rides - the express train. Two trains will take off in the morning and skip 14 stations, enabling people to save 10 minutes on their early morning trip.
The news was welcomed but there were also a few disappointments, as many people will see their Metro station passed by.
“It does not stop at Dubai Marina, where I live. Nor does it stop at Business Bay, where I work. I would really be happy if I could make use of the express train, because I would be able to reach my office at six as I am supposed to. But I think it is not worth it when the stations are not nearby my destinations,”says Amira, a Syrian female.
Metro on Friday
Another long-heard complaint is that of the Metro availability on Friday morning. The earliest Metro starts off on 1pm on this public holiday, to the frustration of many early birds.
“It would be better if the Metro train starts early on Fridays at 10am instead of 1pm as people find it very difficult for travelling,”commented a reader of this website.
Although the Friday is ideally a day of rest, there are people who find this rest in going around. “I once went to Oman on a Friday. I wanted to take the Metro to reach the bus, but I found out that there were no Metro until one. I had to take a taxi,” tells Yvonne from the Netherlands.
The RTA maintains a direct relationship with Dubai Metro users through its customer feedback process.