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Monday, May 26, 2014

Qatar Rail Development Program: progress update

Written by Alexa Hall and Laura Warren Insight What's new? Legal updates Client newsletters Articles Events BLG archive A significant proportion of Qatar’s infrastructure investment is currently focused on the development of a modern rail network via execution, under the control of the Qatar Rail Company (Qatar Rail), of the Qatar Rail Development Program (QRDP). The QRDP consists of a two phase metro network, a light rail transit system and a long distance passenger and freight rail network. Qatar Rail has awarded USD 32 billion in contracts to date with the aim of delivering one of the most sophisticated rail networks in the Middle East region, whilst simultaneously supporting national infrastructure development including the construction of the New Doha International Airport and the New Doha Port. One of the key drivers is the provision of rail services in advance of the FIFA 2022 World Cup. During a press conference held on Monday 9 December 2013, Qatar Rail released information relating to its plans and progress in developing Qatar’s transport system, and in particular, released route maps and a timeline for the high-speed long distance line between Qatar and KSA. In this article, we provide details of this progress update by reference to the three distinct projects which comprise the QRDP. Doha Metro Qatar Rail intends to deliver an operational metro system, consisting of surface level and underground line sections, with 37 stations, in 2019. The number of stations is set to increase to 56 by 2026. Qatar Rail has confirmed that tunnel boring works (which may operate at up to 20-25 meters below ground) at four interconnected lines are presently underway, and work has officially commenced for the set-up of metro stations at 20 locations. Qatar Rail has also released route maps for three of the coloured metro lines. Gold Line (Historic Line) The Gold Line is to run from east to west initially beneath Al Waab Street, starting from the Villagio mall. The route map shows that thereafter the Gold Line will cut through the residential areas of Fereej bin Mahmoud to follow Al Adhwaa Street into Musheireb station and then curve south to follow Ras Abu Abboud Street past the north end of the Doha International Airport runway. Green Line (Education Line) The Green Line will also run east to west and initially at ground level from the Al Rayyan Stadium before passing underground below the Dukhan Highway and past Education City. Thereafter, the Green Line will stop at the Qatar National Library (currently under construction), turn south at Huwar Street and eventually cross the Hamad Medical Center before turning into Musheireb. Red Line (Coast Line) The Red Line will run at ground level along Al Khor Coast Road, before turning into the Qatar University campus, and then east along the southern boundary of the Doha Golf Club. The Red Line will then descend underground as it passes the Grand Hyatt Hotel before it stops at the Katara Cultural Village. Thereafter, the Red Line is designed to run between the Qatar International Exhibition Center and the Intercontinental Hotel into the Dafna central business district, past the City Center Mall and Doha Convention Center. It will subsequently run along Majlis Al Taawon, parallel to the Corniche, towards Musheireb. Finally, the Red Line will run along Al Matar Street, turning east into the Hamad International Airport. The Doha Metro project also includes the construction of the Musheireb and Education City Stations, the package for which has been let in one "Major Stations" contract. Musheireb Station is located in the heart of Downtown Doha and is designed to be the major interchange station for the Red, Green and Gold lines. Education City Station will link the Green Line with the long distance passenger rail track. The majority of the Phase One (Initial Network Scheme) Doha Metro contracts, including the main construction contracts for the Red Line North, Red Line South, Green Line and Major Stations, were awarded in May 2012. We understand that the Gold Line packages (underground and at-grade) are at the prequalification stage of the tender process. The second phase of this project, due for completion by 2026, will also include the construction of a Blue Line (City Line) which is intended to connect newly built residential and commercial areas of West Bay and Airport City North along the C-Ring Road. Doha Metro Qatar Rail intends to deliver an operational metro system, consisting of surface level and underground line sections, with 37 stations, in 2019. The number of stations is set to increase to 56 by 2026. Qatar Rail has confirmed that tunnel boring works (which may operate at up to 20-25 meters below ground) at four interconnected lines are presently underway, and work has officially commenced for the set-up of metro stations at 20 locations. Qatar Rail has also released route maps for three of the coloured metro lines. Gold Line (Historic Line) The Gold Line is to run from east to west initially beneath Al Waab Street, starting from the Villagio mall. The route map shows that thereafter the Gold Line will cut through the residential areas of Fereej bin Mahmoud to follow Al Adhwaa Street into Musheireb station and then curve south to follow Ras Abu Abboud Street past the north end of the Doha International Airport runway. Green Line (Education Line) The Green Line will also run east to west and initially at ground level from the Al Rayyan Stadium before passing underground below the Dukhan Highway and past Education City. Thereafter, the Green Line will stop at the Qatar National Library (currently under construction), turn south at Huwar Street and eventually cross the Hamad Medical Center before turning into Musheireb. Red Line (Coast Line) The Red Line will run at ground level along Al Khor Coast Road, before turning into the Qatar University campus, and then east along the southern boundary of the Doha Golf Club. The Red Line will then descend underground as it passes the Grand Hyatt Hotel before it stops at the Katara Cultural Village. Thereafter, the Red Line is designed to run between the Qatar International Exhibition Center and the Intercontinental Hotel into the Dafna central business district, past the City Center Mall and Doha Convention Center. It will subsequently run along Majlis Al Taawon, parallel to the Corniche, towards Musheireb. Finally, the Red Line will run along Al Matar Street, turning east into the Hamad International Airport. The Doha Metro project also includes the construction of the Musheireb and Education City Stations, the package for which has been let in one "Major Stations" contract. Musheireb Station is located in the heart of Downtown Doha and is designed to be the major interchange station for the Red, Green and Gold lines. Education City Station will link the Green Line with the long distance passenger rail track. The majority of the Phase One (Initial Network Scheme) Doha Metro contracts, including the main construction contracts for the Red Line North, Red Line South, Green Line and Major Stations, were awarded in May 2012. We understand that the Gold Line packages (underground and at-grade) are at the prequalification stage of the tender process. The second phase of this project, due for completion by 2026, will also include the construction of a Blue Line (City Line) which is intended to connect newly built residential and commercial areas of West Bay and Airport City North along the C-Ring Road. Lusail Light Rail Transit project The Lusail Light Rail Transit (LRT) project is designed to consist of a 30.5km track and 37 stations. The majority of the track will be at grade but four of the lines include 10km of underground tunnels and a 1km section is elevated. Passengers will be able to transfer between the Lusail LTR lines and the Doha Metro lines at the Lusail Marina/Pearl station. Qatar Rail’s objective is to create an integrated transport system for the visitors, employees and residents of the Lusail city. We understand that this project is at an advanced stage with 60% of the tunnelling works and 50% of the Al Khor Bridge works complete at present. Qatar Rail’s anticipated completion date is 2017 although it is rumoured that trains may start running between 3 stations as part of the first phase in 2016. Long distance An important part of the QRDP’s vision is the construction of a long distance passenger and freight rail network which serves two purposes: (1) the connection of densely populated and industry heavy centres in Qatar; and (2) linking the 6 GCC (Gulf Corporation Council) countries (Qatar, KSA, UAE, Kuwait, Bahrain and Oman) as part of the wider GCC rail network. The long distance network is to be phased in order to meet GCC commitments and domestic demands. We understand that Qatar Rail is currently in the process of awarding a design contract for the first phase of the network, namely the mixed (passenger and freight) track connecting Doha to KSA. Qatar Rail anticipates that construction will commence in the third quarter of 2015, with completion due in approximately 2017-2018, before the onset of testing and final fit-up works. The remainder of the long distance rail network consists of: Freight rail line from Port Mesaieed to Ras Laffan High speed passenger rail line connecting Doha and Bahrain Mixed (passenger and freight) rail line from Doha to Dukhan Mixed (passenger and freight) rail line from Doha to Al Shamal Qatar Rail expects that the rail network will be at least 350km long, with a scheduled completion date of 2029. Conclusion Qatar Rail has undertaken to achieve economic viability, social responsibility, environmental effectiveness and operational excellence in delivering the QRDP. The intention is to establish a high quality and integrated public transport network that results in a shift from private vehicles to public transport across Qatar, whilst recognising freedom of choice in transport. In particular, the rail network is designed to achieve more efficient movement of people and goods, with the objective (fittingly termed "keep traffic moving") of reducing traffic congestion, including heavy urban traffic and construction site traffic. The rail network will offer a quick and safe mode of public transport, significantly reducing private car trips and saving commuting time, and with the side effect of reducing traffic pollution and accident rates. The QRDP is a manifestation of Qatar’s commitment to delivering a sustainable future for a growing economy and an increasing population, and a continual upward surge in infrastructure development. The project is designed to align with the transportation objectives contained in the Qatar National Development Framework 2012-2032 and additionally, Qatar’s National Vision 2033 strategy. This is aimed at transforming Qatar into an advanced, sustainable country with a high standard of living for future generations with focus on the four "pillars" of economic, environmental, human and social development. The citizens of Qatar and QRDP stakeholders alike eagerly wait to see how Qatar Rail will successfully deliver this leading-edge rail project within the confines of an ambitious programme and how this will impact on doing business in Qatar and the daily lives of many more generally. Published on 30 January 2014 Authors: Laura Warren Jurisdictions: Middle East Areas of expertise: Projects and construction, Major projects, Infrastructure, Transport infrastructure, Rail ======================= Train crash in northern India kills at least 40, many trapped Mon, May 26 06:43 AM EDT By Sharat Pradhan LUCKNOW, India (Reuters) - A passenger train collided with a stationary goods train in India's most populous state on Monday, killing at least 40 people and injuring more than 150, police and railway officials said. Mangled passenger coaches climbed on top of the goods train and many people were trapped inside near Churaib station, in the Sant Kabir Nagar district of the northern state of Uttar Pradesh, said a police spokesman in the state capital, Lucknow. Monday's crash is the latest to highlight India's ailing infrastructure, a problem that Narendra Modi, due to be sworn in as prime minister on Monday, has vowed to make a top priority. "My condolences to families of those who lost their lives in the Gorakhdham Express tragedy. Prayers with the injured," Modi tweeted on Monday. The Gorakhdham Express is the name of the passenger train. Modi has promised to build new inter-state highways and a network of bullet trains, as well as addressing severe electricity shortages. At least 19 people were killed and 130 injured when a train derailed in western India earlier this month. (Writing by Shyamantha Asokan; Editing by Nick Macfie) ======================== Monday, August 13, 2012 QRC awards Doha Metro contracts Written by Keith Barrow inShare. QATAR Railways Company (QRC) signed five contracts worth a total of Riyals 1.48bn ($US 406.6m) on August 12 for preliminary works and project management on Phase 1a of the Doha Metro. A consortium of Porr, Saudi Binladin Group, and Hamad Bin Khaled Contracting Company, has been awarded a Riyals 288m contract to carry out enabling works, while three consulting groups have been selected to provide engineering and project management services. These comprise Louis Berger/Egis Rail; Jacobs Engineering Group; and Hill International. Lloyds Register Rail has also been awarded a Riyals 55m contract to act as independent security and safety consultant. Construction is due to start in the first quarter of next year on Phase 1a, which comprises four lines totalling 75km with 26 stations. This will include 56km of underground lines in single bore tunnels, 17km on viaduct, and 5.3km at grade. The initial phase is due to be completed by October 2019. =======================

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