Fahd Causeway congestion continues despite efforts

Updated 03 February 2016
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Fahd Causeway congestion continues despite efforts

ALKHOBAR: Congestion on the King Fahd Causeway during holiday periods continues despite efforts to add extra lanes because many people travel over the bridge at the same time.

This is according to a source at the causeway, who rejected reports that nothing has been done by the authorities to alleviate this situation over the years. He said over 50,000 vehicles cross the bridge each day, or 1.5 million every month. These figures are higher on weekends and public holidays.
He said that when the bridge was built 27 years ago it was designed to accommodate 5,000 cars and 120 trucks per day. There has been constant widening over the past few years to accommodate the extra traffic, he said.
A short-term plan saw the removal of sidewalks and the fountain, which resulted in the number of lanes increasing from 10 to 18, raising capacity by 80 percent.
Three of the extra lanes were dedicated to specific categories of travelers, such as students at universities in Bahrain, people with special needs and diplomats.
The aim over the coming few years is to accommodate up to 250,000 daily users. The most important project is the building of islands on both sides of the bridge, which would be used for customs and passport procedures. This would see the bridge accommodate 100 million annual travelers, roughly five times the current figures, he said.


Riyadh to host forum to observe World Heritage Day next year

Riyadh hosts the sixth National Urban Heritage Forum in April with its focus on investment opportunities in the urban heritage. (Reuters)
Updated 2 min 24 sec ago
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Riyadh to host forum to observe World Heritage Day next year

  • Forum will encourage private investment to capitalize on the country’s rich urban heritage
  • Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage hosts the forum each year in a different part of the Kingdom

RIYADH: The Saudi capital will host the sixth National Urban Heritage Forum (NUHF) next April to coincide with World Heritage Day, with its focus on investment opportunities in urban heritage.

“The four-day National Built Heritage Forum will be launched in Riyadh on April 15,” said Majed Alshadeed, a spokesman for the Saudi Commission for Tourism and National Heritage (SCTH), on Thursday, adding that the forum will culminate on April 18, World Heritage Day. World Heritage Day is celebrated every year on April 18 with the aim of preserving the human heritage and recognizing the efforts of the relevant organizations in the field.

Organized by SCTH under the umbrella of the Custodian of the Two Holy Mosques Cultural Heritage Program, the 6th forum will encourage private investment to capitalize on the country’s rich urban heritage.

The forum will look at developing business models in the management and development of — and investment in — urban heritage sites, as well as the development of crafts and handicrafts.

The heritage forum is organized each year by the SCTH in a different province in collaboration with the relevant governorates, municipalities and local universities, following the recommendations of the first International Conference for Urban Heritage in the Islamic Countries, which was held in Riyadh in 2010.

The first session of the NUHF was organized in Makkah province, the second in the Eastern Province, the third in Madinah province, the fourth in Asir province and the fifth in Al-Qassim province.

Next year’s forum seeks to invest the expertise, knowledge and experience that the SCTH has gained and transfer it to the four economic sectors working in urban heritage. These sectors are construction, restoration and contracting, site operation, human resources development, and services and industries related to urban heritage.

The forum will include the distribution of prizes to the projects winning the Prince Sultan bin Salman Urban Heritage Awards, exhibitions, scientific sessions, workshops and business meetings with Saudi and international experts and consultants to discuss investment opportunities in urban heritage. There will also be a specialized expo for companies and institutions working in the sectors of the economics of architectural heritage, restoration and engineering consultancy.