Dubai Creek will have more environment-friendly Abras

DUBAI — Dubai Creek could soon have a more environment-friendly water taxis as studies are presently underway to use solar-powered motors for the traditional diesel-powered Abras, Abdulaziz Malik, Director of Dubai Municipality’s Public Transport Department said yesterday.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Mon 27 Dec 2004, 11:09 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 1:36 PM

Abdulaziz Malik was speaking at a Press conference to announce the beginning of works on the project of two new Abra stations at Dubai Creek and installation of floating pontoons at two of the existing Abra stations.

Making the announcement about the new stations, Rashad Bukhash, Director of General Projects Department, said the step, aimed at developing the creek, is part of the constant efforts of the municipality to further enhance the water taxi service by providing more comfort and facilities to the Abra users.

He said that it is also considered to be a move in the direction of preserving the historical importance of Dubai Creek, which is a strategic location that supports the commercial life of Dubai and forms the main artery of the economic movement in Dubai.

The many facilities constructed alongside the Creek over the years have proved to be a boost to the economic, commercial, tourist, recreational and environmental activities, he added.

Bukhash said the two new stations will be at Al Baniyas Road near Dubai Municipality headquarters on Deira side and Al Seef corner at the Al Seef Road on Bur Dubai side.

“Construction will commence this month and will continue for a period of 12 months. Phased out construction programme will be adopted to minimise the disruption of any service or other inconveniences to the passengers. Accordingly, the phasing-out programme work will commence at Baniyas and Dubai Old Souq Stations first,” Bukhash said.

“The Public Transport department of Dubai Municipality will announce necessary station closures and Abra diversion schemes through the press and by use of station signage as the project proceeds,” Malik said.

“The Abra ferry system, which remained as a mode of crossing the Dubai Creek for more than a century, has formed an integral part of the public transport infrastructure of Dubai. Prior to motorisation, the original Abras were rowed across the Creek,” he added.

“In the latest phase of the development, Dubai Municipality has commissioned a project to upgrade the four existing Abra stations and construct two new stations along the Creek aiming to enhance passenger safety, amenity value and the efficiency of the system to meet the future demand of 19.4 million passengers in year 2015,” Malik said.

He said that in 2002, Bur Dubai Abra Station was converted to trial a pontoon system for Abra berthing and passenger access.

As the trial station has performed extremely successfully, a similar configuration will be adopted for all Abra stations in the new project. In addition to introduction of pontoons, the amenity value of the landside will be improved using modern architectural features blended with heritage and cultural attribute of Dubai,” Malik said.

Khalid Mohammed Al Zahed, Head of Costal Management Section, said the strategic projects undertaken by the civic body for costal management amounts to more than Dh32 million.

“This work, being monitored by the Coastal Management Section of the General Projects Department, includes regular maintenance of the coastal amenities, setting up of floating pontoons for Abra stations and enhancing the quality of creek water,” Al Zahed said.

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