Mass transit system a must: DM official

ABU DHABI — Public transport will account for 17 per cent of the total movement of traffic once the Dubai train system is introduced, Abdul Aziz Abdulla Malik, Director of Public Transport Department of Dubai Municipality said in the capital yesterday.

By A Staff Reporter

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Published: Wed 2 Feb 2005, 9:23 AM

Last updated: Thu 2 Apr 2015, 7:27 PM

At the venue of the Environment 2005 exhibition and conference, Malik said that the Dubai transport public system currently accounted for 5.4 per cent of the transportation activity which included taxis and private vehicles.

"It is imperative to strengthen the public transportation network in order to provide safe, secure and congenial conditions for travel and protection of the environment," he said, noting that mass transit systems will reduce the level of pollution, mainly attributable to fumes from exhausts of vehicles.

Malik said that the Dubai Public Transport catered to 90 million commuters last year at an average rate of 210,000 per day while the public marine transport reached out to some 16 million people, which represents an increase of three million over the previous year.

"This means nearly 50,000 passengers were transported per day. And the number rises to 60,000 per day during public holidays," he said.

The Dubai government is keen on strengthening the public transportation network and it is expected that the fleet of buses will be increased to 800 from the present strength of 500 by 2006, he said.

Malik who is also the head of the Steering Committee of the International Union of Public Transport (UITP), said that a new branch of UITP for the Middle East and North Africa (Mena) region will be formally established at a convention to be held in Rome next year.

"The setting up of the UITP branch will go a long way in streamlining the functioning of the public transport system and creating regulatory mechanisms and authority in member countries.

Among the major issues faced by the Mena region are its growing population that currently stands at 300 million, migration to urban centres and unrestricted use of private vehicles," he said.

"Our endeavour is to bring all the players in the field of public transportation on one platform, to discuss issues, exchange ideas and come up with solutions," he said.

He also noted that the setting up of the UITP branch assumes significance in the light of developments in the region, including the plans to set up railway network in centres such as Dubai, Iran, Nigeria and Riyadh.

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