The UK’s Atkins says it will now carry out a six-week review of Qatar’s QR10bn ($2.7bn) West Bay people-mover project.

Qatar Railways Company (QRC) has increased the budget for the project from its initial forecast of QR8bn. Atkins’ study will help advise the QRC on whether to develop the people-mover at grade level, elevated or underground.

The QRC received bids for the project management consultancy contract for the people mover on 29 March (MEED 14:3:11). An award is expected in June.

The automated people-mover will connect the Doha Convention Centre & Tower to major points in the West Bay area. The first phase will transport 5,900 passengers an hour in each direction with 19 stations and about 66 cars.

The people-mover will eventually be integrated with the Doha metro and the Lusail LRT.

The QRC has been operational since March 2011 and it is responsible for the development of Qatar’s $35bn rail programme. It is a joint venture of Qatari Diar Real Estate Investment Company and Germany’s Deutsche Bahn.

Automated people-movers are also planned in other areas of Doha, including Education City and Lusail City, where the Fifa World Cup will be held in 2022.