Flexible tolls in Dubai? RTA responds to Salik gate suggestion

Majority of residents would switch to public transport, says survey

by

Sahim Salim

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Published: Mon 22 Jan 2024, 6:23 PM

Last updated: Tue 23 Jan 2024, 7:51 AM

With two new Salik gates coming up in Dubai, an overwhelming majority of respondents to a Khaleej Times poll have said that they would switch to public transport. More than 3,000 people took part in the poll conducted by KT as at 8pm Monday, with more than 1,900 saying they would make the switch.

The new toll gates at the Business Bay Crossing and Al Safa South will become fully operational by November.

Among the aims of setting up the additional toll gates is “encouraging public transport usage and reducing dependence on private vehicles”, according to the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA).

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“The traffic toll policies … encourage the public to shift towards mass transport means such as the metro, buses, marine transport, and soft mobility options,” said Mattar Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of the RTA, as the authority announced the new toll gates.

Meanwhile, the RTA has said that it will — in the future — consider a suggestion to implement a flexible toll system that takes into account traffic congestion and gate locations.

The RTA was responding to a tweet by veteran lawyer Dr Habib Al Mulla, who proposed two ideas:

  • The first is dynamic toll fares that increase during peak hours and decrease when there is no traffic congestion. This will help reduce traffic on streets with Salik gates, while ensuring motorists are not charged the same toll when passing through them when they are not crowded.
  • The second is to impose double fees in central business districts during working hours. “This system is in place in many countries and aims to spare business areas such as the financial centres, for example, from unnecessary traffic,” he posted on X.

In response, the RTA said it is open to implementing these suggestions based on its studies.

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