The Department of Transport (DoT) has invited contractors to express interest in construction contracts the planned Abu Dhabi Metro scheme.

In meetings with contractors in early May, the DoT outlined its schedule for the project, which once commenced, will be one of the largest construction schemes in the emirate.

After receiving expressions of interest in May, it will invite companies to submit prequalification applications in July and draw up a list of prequalifiers by October this year. It then plans to tender the first contracts in the first quarter of 2014.

There are two main components of the system. The first is a single 18-kilometre line between Zayed Sports City and the Mina Zayed/central business district area. There will be 17 stations on the line, 13 of which will be elevated.

The second is two light rail transit (LRT) systems and one bus rapid transport (BRT) system. The first LRT line will run from Marina Mall to Reem Island. Known as the Blue line, it will be 15km long and will have 24 stations.

A second LRT line will run from Karama to Saadiyat Island. Known as the Green line, it will be 13km long and will have 21 stations.

The BRT line, which is known as the Orange line, will be a 14km loop connecting 25 stations serving the islands northern areas such as Khalidiya and Al-Maryah.

The DOT plans to split the metro line into three separate contracts. The first will cover the civil works for the above ground structures which will be awarded as design and build contracts. The second will be for the underground construction work, which again will be awarded using a design and build contract. The third covers the rail system, the rolling stock and the operation and maintenance for the line. That will be awarded using a design, build, operate and maintain contract.

The LRT and BRT systems will be delivered using design, build, operate and maintain contracts.

The study and preliminary design contract for Abu Dhabi’s metro system was awarded to a consortium comprising US-based consultancy firms Aecom and Parsons Brinckerhoff and Germany’s DB International in November last year. The consortium, known as the Adapt Group, also completed the feasibility study for the scheme.

The original masterplan for the metro involved the construction of 131 kilometres of line, supported by tram and bus feeder services.