UAE national railway network passengers will be offered “door-to-door” service to ensure they reach their final destination from the station in the utmost comfort, said a top official from Etihad Rail.
Ahmed Al Musawa Al Hashemi, Executive Director of Passenger Sector at Etihad Rail, said the railways will be integrated with all modes of transport and shared mobility solutions. There will be public transportation available to a passenger’s final destination be it their home, place of work or a tourist spot.
“As a passenger I want a service that will take me door-to-door and not just station-to-station. We are working with local authorities in every emirate to ensure a first and last mile solution to take people from the railway station to their final destination. This includes solutions of shared mobility, light trains like trams, buses, car rentals, park-and-ride facilities at the stations. To achieve this, we are looking at a high level of integration between railways and all modes of transport,” Al Hashemi told Khaleej Times.
The passenger services aim to provide commuters with a seamless, integrated, and time-saving experience throughout their entire journey, starting from booking their travel until reaching their final destination.
The passenger train will connect 11 cities and regions in the UAE from Al Sila to Fujairah, including Al Ruwais, Al Mirfa, Dubai, Sharjah, Al Dhaid, and Abu Dhabi.
Al Hashemi underlined that the railway network will continue to grow.
“We are continuously studying and safeguarding potential routes for expansion, to ensure readiness in the future in terms of the required infrastructure for developing these routes,” Al Hashemi said.
Same tracks can be used for both freight and passengers and most of the network will be double line. It will cover densely populated and popular areas across the UAE, connecting urban areas with rural areas, making the network more visible to the community members.
Each train will have a seating capacity of more than 400 passengers and run up to a speed of 200 km/h. Passengers can travel from Abu Dhabi to Dubai in 50 minutes, and from the capital to Fujairah in 100 minutes. By 2030, the number of passengers is expected to reach more than 36.5 million annually.
Recently, Etihad Rail signed an agreement worth Dh1.2 billion with Spanish firm CAF for designing, manufacturing, supplying and maintaining passenger trains of the national railway network. For the passenger transport services, Etihad Rail has inked a financing agreement with First Abu Dhabi Bank.
Ready for GCC Railway
Etihad Rail, Al Hashemi underlined, is the developer and operator of the UAE’s national railway network, connecting the UAE and GCC.
“We ensure adhering to the best international standards in the development and operation of the trains in the UAE. The UAE national rail network will complement the GCC Railway project, thereby, ensuring a seamless connectivity with tracks from Saudi Arabia and Oman.
“The interoperability standards have been unified to the level that enables us to move the trains across the border. So, the gauge and track, signalling and communication system, the key standards of interoperability are all agreed before the start of construction,” Al Hashemi added.
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