His Excellency Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), revealed that mass transit modes in Dubai comprising Dubai Metro, public buses, water transport and taxicabs, have lifted in the first half of this year 180,544,372 passengers.
He further added that this number was likely to increase considerably with the opening of the Green Line next September as it serves vital areas busy with government & business activities and high population density.
“In keeping with RTA strategic plan aimed at boosting integration between mass transit means; which is aligned with Dubai Infrastructure Strategic Plan aimed at providing integrated roads & transport systems ensuring smooth movement & highest safety levels for all system users, RTA has made strenuous efforts to upgrade mass transit systems in Dubai to make them the first choice of commuters within the Emirate in order to realize one of the core objectives of the RTA; which is reducing the use of private vehicles and increasing the use of mass transit means from 6 per cent in 2009 to as much as 30 per cent in 2020 and this rate clocked 11 per cent in 2011,” said Al Tayer.
“The number of public bus commuters in the first half of 2011 hit 54,077,652 passengers where bus transport service within Dubai city accounted to 42,329,663 passengers, followed by metro stations feeder bus service (6,109,602 passengers) and inter-city bus service (5,638,387 passengers).
“Over the last six months Dubai Metro lifted about 28,986,110 passengers with March recording the highest number of commuters amounting to 5.094 million passengers, and passengers count over the remaining four months ranged from 4.6 million passengers to 4.959 million passengers per month. Al Ittihad and Khalid bin Al Waleed Stations had the lion share in the number of metro users as Al Ittihad Station served 3,288,388 passengers, followed by Khalid bin Al Waleed Station (3,049,528 passengers), Deira City Center Station (2,360,628 passengers), Mall of the Emirates Station (1,969,501 passengers), and Al Rigga Station (1,830,391 passengers).
“Marine transit modes comprising abras, water bus and water taxi lifted in the first half of last year 7,291,712 passengers shared between abras (7,088,516 passengers), water bus (197,485 passengers) and water taxi (5,708 passengers).
“Taxicabs operating in Dubai made 45,094,449 trips lifting 90,188,898 passengers in the last six months. Dubai Taxi cabs alone have made about 18,003,000 trips lifting about 36 million passengers while franchise companies taxicabs (National Taxi, Cars Taxi, Metro Taxi and Arabia Taxi) have made 27,091,520 trips lifting 54,183,058 passengers.
“The huge investments injected by Dubai Government in upgrading the transport system infrastructure proved both successful & effective. The rising number of mass transport commuters illustrates the evolution in the culture of using mass transit means by the public representing various spectrums of the community particularly with the availability of the metro service. Using public transport has multiple benefits including the physical & psychological convenience of passengers besides curtailing the number of traffic accidents, and costs of fuel & maintenance of private vehicles as well as alleviating the difficulties of finding parking spaces for private vehicles; which has become one of the challenges faced by modern cities across the world. Additionally, using public transport means effectively contributes to reducing the environmental pollution resulting from the massive number of private vehicles on roads; which triggers several ailments including respiratory diseases.
“RTA is always seeking to improve its business processes through developing a number of creative solutions & strategic initiatives launched under the vision of providing safe & smooth transport for all. On the 1st of November 2010 it launched Public Transport Day initiative enabling Nol card holders use Dubai Metro, public buses and water bus free of charge for one day. It will continue develop quality services to the public in keeping with the regional & global profile of Dubai in commercial, economic, service, financial, real estate and tourist sectors among others,” said Mattar Al Tayer in a concluding remark.