Abu Dhabi’s Department of Transport has selected US-based Fluor Corporation for the contract to manage the emirate’s transport network.

The project management consultancy contract involves supervising the development and construction of a metro and a light rail system, but will also include other transport links such as buses and water taxi networks.

The proposed metro is Abu Dhabi’s largest infrastructure project and involves the construction of metro lines serving Abu Dhabi Island and new developments adjacent to the city. The first phase will connect the city’s downtown areas with Abu Dhabi International airport.

In October, the Department of Transport selected a group of the US’ Aecom, Germany’s DB International and Parsons Brinckerhoff, also of the US, to act as the design consultant for the metro, but no formal award has been made.

For the light rail system, the Department of Transport is currently holding meetings with selected firms for a consultancy contract covering a feasibility study and outline design. Once the meetings are completed, the department will select a consultant (MEED 24:12:09).

If it goes ahead, the contract will involve laying 340 kilometres of tram lines. It will open in 2014 and will connect with the proposed metro, which is due to be completed in 2015.

In total, the emirate plans to spend $68bn on upgrading its transport infrastructure by 2017. The most urgent schemes are the ones on Abu Dhabi Island and the surrounding areas, where the population is expected to grow to 3.2 million in future, from the current level of 900,000.