New projects to ease Jeddah traffic

New projects to ease Jeddah traffic
Updated 31 May 2013

New projects to ease Jeddah traffic

New projects to ease Jeddah traffic

Relief appears to be on the way for Jeddah's long-suffering motorists as the Jeddah Municipality adds the final touches to a number of underpasses and bridges that it says will significantly reduce traffic on the city's notoriously congested roads this year.
Three major projects, out of 29 underpasses and overpasses, are on the verge of completion. Another seven projects costing an estimated SR 1 billion are also under construction.
Jeddah Municipality spokesman Abdul Aziz Al-Nihari said the tunnel at the Prince Mohammad bin Abdul Aziz Road junction that links Al-Macarona Road, and costing over SR 72 million, will open by the end of Ramadan.
In addition, the Madinah Road Bridge which links the Amal Road and costing over SR 103 million will be completed by the end of this month, while the King Fahd Road bridge which links the Industrial Institute Road, and valued at over SR 96 million is also expected to be functional simultaneously.
This is in addition to the junction bridge on King Abdul Aziz Road that links Ismael Abu Dawood Road which is 733 meters long and costing an estimated SR 28 million. The junction bridge, 1,250 meters long, on King Fahd Road linking with Hera Street, and crossing Prince Sultan bin Salman Road is nearing completion. It will cost an estimated SR 122 million.
A bridge being built to link Palestine Road with Prince Miteb Road and Dallah Road with three lanes in each direction, at a cost of over SR 179 million, is in the works. This is in addition to an underpass measuring 575 meters in length on the King Fahd Road with Sari Street, linking Al-Falak Square. It also has three lanes each way.
The cultural design will be restored after the completion of the project by mid-2014. It will cost an estimated SR 88 million. Al-Nihari said the municipality has many other vital projects to deal with traffic congestion in Jeddah.
These will be in the form of new bridges and underpasses at a cost of SR 2 billion and are expected to be completed in 2014, which will make Jeddah one of the major tourist cities in the Kingdom.
The Red Sea port city will also witness the implementation of a public transport project which has been approved by the Council of Ministers and is in the first stages of research and architectural design. It will be put up for international bidding.
The project is being supervised by the Jeddah and Metro Company, owned by Jeddah Company for Construction Development. Another company specializing in public transportation will be chosen for the implementation of the project to guarantee quality in the project’s various stages, he said.
This project includes establishing a train network inside the city with three main paths each with special colors.
The Orange Line will be 67 km long with 22 stations, starting from Makkah Road, passing through the Central Area and moving on north to Obhur.
The Blue Line will be 24 km long with 17 stations, from King Abdulaziz International Airport to Al-Haramain train station.
The Green Line will be 17 km long with seven stations from the Corniche on Palestine Road, branching through the old airport to Al-Haramain train station. The number of carriages serving the train network is 208 with 816 buses, and 2,950 stations. The total length of the network will be more than 750 km.
Al-Nihari pointed out that the public transport project has freight lines with normal entertainment services. It has 10 stations, and includes the construction of the 500-meter, 74-meter-wide Obhur Bridge, which will be one the biggest suspension bridges in the world. It will be constructed with arches and made up of traffic paths. This includes a path for light train transportation and a two-meter pedestrian path.
He expects the projects' studies to be completed in a year.
The first outlines of the 108-km-long Metro project have been defined.
Zaid Al-Hamzi, spokesman for the Jeddah Traffic Administration, said the latest statistics show that Jeddah has seven million cars. Jeddah is different from other cities in that it has four traffic peak periods: two at the beginning and end of the morning work shift, and two during shopping time, which extends from five in the afternoon until 11 at night. Jeddah has 3.4 million citizens, and extends over an urban area of 1,765 sq. km.
Mohammad bin Hamdoun, a sales representative, said his work demands a lot of moving around on Jeddah’s congested roads. In the past, he suffered because of the long distances and long hours on the roads, because there were not enough overpasses and underpasses. But after the construction of new bridges and especially the Prince Mohammad bin Abdulaziz (Al-Tahliya) underpass, he can cover distances in record time.
“It takes a lot of time to cross from Palestine, Prince Miteb and Dallah Roads, especially with construction work taking place at the moment, but after the completion of the bridge it will take me less than 15 minutes to get to my destination. However, we will still need to abide by traffic laws and regulations to have safe and fast journeys,” he said.
Amr Abdul Ra’of, another Jeddah resident, said: “We are quite happy with these projects, because they will eliminate the traffic congestion we suffer from daily. I am quite certain that building bridges and underpasses will make transportation much easier.”
“Earlier, it used to take more than an hour to pass through Prince Majed Road, but now traffic has eased thanks to the construction of bridges and underpasses.”