His Excellency Mattar Mohammed Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), and His Excellency Lieutenant General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri, Commander-in-Chief of Dubai Police, have recently made an inspection tour of cycling tracks and pedestrian crossing projects currently undertaken by RTA in Dubai.
The construction of such infrastructure projects is a manifestation of the vision of HH Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, to bring happiness to people and switch to a sustainable transport model characterised by minimal pollution to the environment.
The projects also respond to the directives of His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of the Executive Council, to make Dubai a bicycle-friendly city providing suitable mobility options that encourage people to practice cycling sport. They are also part of the Dubai Vision 2021, which aims to strengthen Dubai's position as the world’s most preferred place to live, work and visit
Al Tayer and Al Marri toured the cycling tracks constructed by RTA at the highest international standards to link vibrant communities with various public transit means. Until the beginning of this year, RTA constructed cycling tracks extending 425 km and intends to extend them further to as much as 647 km by 2025.
The two senior officials inspected the pedestrian bridge on King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud Street at the Marina. It features a design inspired by the urban outlook of the locality and is considered the first 4-way bridge built at the intersection of the King Salman bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud Street with Al Gharbi Street nearby the JBR. The bridge stretches 65 metres and handles about 8000 persons per hour in all directions.
“The construction of pedestrian bridges in Dubai is part of Dubai’s traffic safety strategy targeting a zero-fatality rate to rank Dubai amongst the world’s safest cities in traffic safety by 2021. RTA considers certain perimeters when determining the locations of pedestrian bridges in Dubai such as the intensity of traffic, pedestrian accidents and fatalities, speed limit, number of lanes, the movement of people between the two sides of the road, and the nearest pedestrian crossing and bus stops. The traffic studies also assign due consideration to areas where entities and retailers are abundant as well as run-over accidents hotspots,” said Al Tayer.
“The number of footbridges constructed in Dubai soared from 13 bridges in 2006 to 116 bridges in 2020. RTA plans to build other 34 pedestrian bridges during 2021-2026, which will bring the total number of pedestrian bridges to 150 bridges. RTA’s efforts to improve pedestrians' safety contributed to reducing pedestrian fatalities by 76.5% between 2007 and 2019,” explained Al Tayer.
At the end of the tour, His Excellency Lieutenant General Abdullah Khalifa Al Marri praised RTA’s efforts to upgrade the infrastructure of cycling tracks in a way compatible with the deliverables of the ‘Cycling is a Lifestyle’ Innovation Lab held in Dubai. During the Lab, His Highness Sheikh Hamdan bin Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Dubai Crown Prince and Chairman of the Executive Council announced the transformation of Dubai into a bicycle-friendly city. He also pointed out that RTA’s efforts contributed to promoting the culture of using cycling tracks and improving the quality of life in Dubai. Al Marri concluded by paying tribute to RTA’s efforts to expand the construction of pedestrian crossings in support of Dubai’s Traffic Strategy 2021 to reduce traffic accident fatalities.