His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice President and Prime Minister of UAE and the Ruler of Dubai will officially inaugurate the Dubai Canal today, in a grand ceremony planned for the evening.
The Dh2.7billion Dubai Water Canal, a 3.2 km-long tourist landmark development, which passes across the Business Bay to Safa Park, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah 2, Jumeirah Road and continues to terminate in the Arabian Gulf, namely at the Jumeirah Beach Park.
This six-metre deep and 120-metre wide waterway has created a 6.4 km-long waterfront, which will include cycling and jogging tracks.
Mattar Al Tayer, the director-general and chairman of the RTA board, said in a statement: "The Dubai Water Canal is one of the smartest ideas of Sheikh Mohammed to add a unique tourist and commercial showpiece offering a new style of living in Dubai city. He is always keen to roll out creative and cracking visionary ideas that define new concepts for peoples’ happiness and welfare.”
Five pedestrian bridges, he stated, have been constructed, of which three cross the Dubai Water Canal with unique aesthetic specifications rising 8.5 meters to facilitate the movement of pedestrians.
The first and second bridges are located between Sheikh Zayed Road and Al Wasl Roads, and the third is located in the area between Al Wasl and Jumeirah Roads, said the RTA chief.
Dedicated footpaths, running track, and plazas have been provided and fitted with interactive screens, and sitting areas overlooking the Canal, he added.
In order to fulfill the requirements of the smart city needs, smart electric poles controllable with a smart app have been used.
Decorative and creative lighting and landscaping works have been provided on both sides of the Canal, said Al Tayer.
According to RTA, the new area is expected to attract more than 30 million visitors per annum. The marine transit services will also woo more tourists.
Earlier, Sheikh Mohammed directed to provide marine transport services along the Dubai Water Canal and the Business Bay once the Canal is open to link with the service in Dubai Creek and coastal areas of Dubai.
In implementation of these directives, the Board of Executive Directors of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), has approved in a meeting chaired by HE Mattar Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of Board of Executive Directors of RTA, a plan for operating marine transport services in nine new stations.
The service, which will start on the day following the official opening of the Canal, will call at five stations along the Canal, namely Sheikh Zayed Road, Safa Park, Al Wasl, Jumeirah, Dubai Canal stations.
It will also call at four stations along the Business Bay namely Dubai Design District, Al Wajeha Al Maeyah, Marasi, and the Business Bay stations.
Thus, the total number of marine transport stations and stops in Dubai will rise to 42.
Al Tayer explained: “The service will be available on demand on board the Water Taxi from 10 am to 10pm in all new stations.
“The Dubai Ferry will offer service in five stations, two at the Dubai Water Canal, and three at the Business Bay. There will be three newly scheduled two-way daily services for the Dubai Ferry from Al Jaddaf Station calling at Dubai Design District, Al Wajeha Al Maeyah, and Marasi stations in the Business Bay; and the Sheikh Zayed Road and the Dubai Canal stations in the Dubai Water Canal.
“The services will start at 10am, 12 midday and 5.30 pm. The current line of the Dubai Ferry shuttling between Al Ghubaiba Station and Marina Mall Station will be modified to call the Dubai Canal Station.
“Thus, the Dubai Canal Station will link between Al Ghubaiba, Marina Mall, Business Bay and Al Jaddaf. Due attention has been given to the integration of other transit modes (buses, trains and taxis) in order to provide a smooth and safe service for commuters.”
“The fare of the tourist class of the Dubai Ferry will be Dh15 to one station, Dh25 to two stations, Dh35 to three stations, Dh45 to 4 stations, and Dh50 over the entire line.
“The fare of the gold class will be Dh25 to one station, Dh35 to two stations, Dh50 to three stations, Dh60 to 4 stations, and Dh75 over the entire line. The fare of the Water Taxi will range from Dh55 to Dh205, and the cost of charting the Water Taxi for one-hour amounts to Dh400,” added Al Tayer.
“The marine transport sector is set to undergo a quantum shift in the number of transit modes, stations and riders with the operation of the new stations following the link between the Business Bay and the Arabian Gulf beaches via the Dubai Water Canal.
“The marine transit modes will be the ideal choice of considerable numbers of citizens, residents, tourists in moving around and enjoying the picturesque tourist and urban facilities at the two sides of the Dubai Creek, Business Bay and the Dubai Water Canal.
“The Marine transport sector is an integral part of the mass transit network in the Emirate with estimated ridership in the tune of 13 million riders per annum.
“In view of the importance of this sector as a vital transit mode, RTA has developed a master plan for upgrading marine transport systems in the Emirate including the operation of Dubai Creek lines, coastal line alongside the Jumeirah Beaches, new islands service lines, in addition to the Business Bay and Dubai Water Canal lines.”