Dubai Metro effect: Ferrying people, changing lives

Dubai Metro effect: Ferrying people, changing lives

The metro has left an indelible impact on the emirate's economy, society, tourism and on the business.

By Vicky Kapur (From the Executive Editor's desk)

Published: Mon 9 Sep 2019, 8:15 PM

"On résiste à l'invasion des armées; on ne résiste pas à l'invasion des idées," Victor Hogo wrote in 1852 in the Histoire d'un Crime. Translated, that means, "You can resist an invading army; you cannot resist an idea whose time has come." The Dubai Metro was one such idea whose time had come when it was inaugurated by His Highness Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum, Vice-President and Prime Minister of the UAE and Ruler of Dubai, ten years ago this day, on 09/09/09.
As the Dubai Metro celebrates its 10th anniversary today, it is clear that it has left an indelible impact on the emirate's economy, on society, on tourism, and on business. The Metro has today ferried more than 1.5 billion people over a 10-year period, and is getting set to be the cornerstone of Dubai's transportation plan for the Expo 2020 mega-event. In retrospect, even an average person like me can see that it is a project that has had a profound impact on the way Dubai residents commute and on the urban development of the emirate.
But as Sheikh Mohammed revealed in a tweet yesterday, this impact wasn't obvious to some members of the Executive Council who turned down the idea when it was first proposed. The basis for this rejection was the apparent lack of a public transport culture in the country and the assumption that residents and citizens would not leave their cars behind and hop on to the Metro. Despite such opposition, it is now clear that the Metro was an idea whose time had come.
The Dubai Metro, the first in the region and with the world's longest driverless metro line, has improved the quality of life of both users and non-users. Besides the obvious effect on traffic congestion and, therefore, travel times, the Metro has also influenced the real estate sector and property prices. HH's vision for the future of mobility in Dubai is based on three principles: technology, eco-friendliness, and long-term investment partnerships. The Metro ticks all the boxes.

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