• Parsons/Systra team to conduct rolling stock and systems study
  • Roads & Transport Authority wants to expand metro capacity
  • Dubai is planning a multi-billion dollar rolling stock investment

Dubai’s Roads & Transport Authority (RTA) has appointed a consultancy team for the study that will look at improving the systems and rolling stock on the Dubai Metro.

The RTA has given the study to a joint venture of US-based Parsons and France’s Systra as a variation to existing work the team is doing on expanding Dubai’s metro network.

The RTA received bids from firms earlier this year after it decided to retender the study in 2014. The transport agency is preparing to make a multibillion-dollar investment in new rolling stock as metro ridership increases ahead of expectations and the system is operating close to full capacity.

Recent studies have shown faster uptake of the transport system and forecasts that numbers will continue to increase in the run-up to the World Expo, being held in the emirate in 2020. The Dubai Metro is the world’s longest driverless metro system and already uses in excess of 80 five-car trains, all of which were built by Japanese rail specialist Kinki Sharyo.

The proposed improvements to the rolling stock and system will be incorporated into the new metro lines the RTA is working on. It is planning to build an extension to the Red Line that will connect to the Expo 2020 site next to Al-Maktoum International airport, in the Jebel Ali area, extend the Red and Green lines, and build other new lines and extensions. The Parsons/Systra team is working on the Expo link, which is now known as Route 2020 as well as the extensions to the Red and Green lines.

The Expo link is the first scheme that will move into construction. The RTA is planning to hold an industry briefing on 7 May for firms interested in working on Route 2020.

The project is the largest infrastructure scheme that will be built for the Expo. It involves building a 15-kilometre-long line branching off the existing Red Line at Nakheel Harbour and Tower station, between Ibn Battuta Mall and Jumeirah Lake Towers stations. About 11km of the line will be elevated, with five elevated stations and two underground stations.

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