Residents of Discovery Gardens finally have something to cheer about with the authorities confirming that work on two new exits to ease the traffic situation in the community will being in a “matter of days.”
The Roads and Transport Authority had earlier confirmed with Emirates 24|7 that two new exits, namely one from Ibn Battuta Mall at Interchange 5.5 onto Sheikh Zayed Road and another leading towards Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road, should be completed before year end.
The RTA further stated these works are undertaken as part of the next five-year plan, which provides for completing parallel roads in that area.
Hussain Al Banna, Director of Traffic, RTA Traffic and Roads Agency, said in a statement: “The RTA had an urgent meeting with Nakheel Company [master developer of Discovery Gardens] to work out solutions and alternatives including streamlining the functionality of light signals in the concerned area in a bid to ensure a smooth traffic flow.
“Within a matter of days, the RTA will embark on studying the provision of temporary entries and exits for the Discovery Gardens through Sheikh Zayed Road and Sheikh Mohammed bin Zayed Road out of its keenness to overcome any difficulties impacting the traffic flow.”
Resident Dev H said this plan will bring a relief to residents who have been enduring such conditions for the past year.
He said: “I am very happy with this decision. For such a large community like the Gardens, which runs at 95 per cent occupancy, one or two small exits could have never really worked in any situation, let alone the mega-jam we faced last week due to the rains.”
Last week’s gridlock lasted up to five hours for several commuters, which Dev said was time enough to have a turnaround flight to India and back.
Marcus Preston, another resident in the community, said: “I always worry that if there is ever a medical emergency what will we do, with an almost daily gridlock that starts around 7.30am and continues well over and hour, and then facing a repeat performance during the evening rush hour.
“Things are further complicated like the situation we faced last week, when the rains caused flooding in the area and had us trapped in traffic for over four hours, including school buses with children on board.”
To provide temporary relief to residents, the RTA has opened a temporary exit, which residents say is a semi-dirt track by the Furjan Villas that was blocked until last week.