Etihad Rail to connect to Dubai Metro at Meydan

Etihad Rail is studying stations at Jebel Ali Port, Al Maktoum International Airport, Meydan and Dubailand. (Supplied)

With the second stage of the Etihad Rail network now in motion, the tracks it will follow in the emirate of Dubai are beginning to take shape.

Four stations are currently under consideration to be constructed in Dubai as part of the Etihad Rail network.

Faris Al Mazrouei, Acting CEO of Etihad Rail spoke to Emirates 24|7 on the sidelines of the opening of the UITP Mena Transport Congress and Exhibition yesterday.

“We are studying four stations for the rail network in Dubai,” he explained.

The latest addition to the network in the emirate is a station near Dubai World Central, offering possible connections to the Expo site.

“We are studying a station in Jebel Ali Port, and another one at Al Maktoum International Airport,” said Al Mazrouei.

A third station under consideration is in Dubailand, and a fourth station in Meydan, where it could possibly connect to Dubai Metro, Al Mazrouei further explained.

“We are working very hard with the Road and Transport Authority (RTA) to realise such an option.

“This is currently one of the ideas that we are discussing.”

While the Meydan connection may take some time to take shape, the connection of the rail network to Jebel Ali is closer in sight.

“The remainder of the mixed-traffic network in Abu Dhabi and the connection to Jebel Ali Port is safeguarded, and preliminary engineering is complete,” reads a status update of Etihad Rail.

“We will be awarding contracts very soon and these are the contracts for the actual building and designing of this part of the rail network,” Al Mazrouei explained, referring to the activities as Stage 2.

Stage 1

Meanwhile, the train network’s referred to as Stage 1 is on wheels and about to become operative.

A 264-km route from Ruwais through Habsan to Shah has been completed and services are currently operative on a trial basis.

“These services will become fully operational very soon,” said Al Mazrouei.

The route currently forms a freight transportation service for the transportation of sulphur from its sources at Shah and Habshan to its point of export at Ruwais.

The rail network is set to become a mixed-use network where freight and passenger transportation will follow the same rail network, which will eventually connect several emirates to neighbouring countries Oman and Saudi Arabia.

Part of Stage 2 is the extension of the built rail network from Ruwais to Ghweifat, where it will cross the border to Saudi Arabia, and eastwards to Al Ain, where it will connect to the network of Oman.

Adding 630km to the existing 264km of rail network, Stage 2 is expected to be completed by January 2017.

The third stage of the project will extend the network to the Northern Emirates of Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah, totaling 280km.

The exact route of this extension is under review. The completion of this part of the network is scheduled for December 2018.

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