BY A STAFF REPORTER
IN response to the near-completion giant maritime projects such as the Palm Deira, the Palm Jumeirah, the Palm Jebel Ali, and The World, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) Marine Agency has said it will run water taxi service by mid 2009.
So far, the transport agency has approved the establishment of 20 stations, of which a Dhs30m 10 boats shall ply.
Acting Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of RTA Marine Agency, Khaled Mohammed Al Zahed, said, "We want to ease the traffic congestion in Dubai.
The project will be specifically important in the foreseeable future, following the completion. Works have already started in designing a model Water Taxi station."
Stations ready for construction or modification, according to Khaled, include Bur Dubai Station, Dubai Old Souk Station, Old Deira Souk Station, Al Sabkha Station, Bani Yas Station, Al Seef Station, the Floating Bridge Station, the Golf Club Station, Park Hyatt Hotel Station, and Dubai Festival City Station. They also include four stations in Dubai Marina, Jebel Ali Golf Resort Station, Al Habtour Hotel Station, Grand and Royal Meridian Hotel Station, Jumeirah Hilton Station, and Jumeirah Sheraton Station.
He said that the project also covers Al Khor lines, the Coastal Line running along Jumeirah coast to serve tourists in the emirate, and the line linking down town Dubai with the Palms projects (Jumeirah, Deira and Jebel Ali) and The World.
"The Agency made several site visits in order to identify possible locations for the Water Taxi stations. Following a study, stations have been classified into four groups: stations ready for construction or modification, stations that require sometime for construction, stations feasible in 2011, and stations considered unfeasible.
He said that one taxi will accommodate 11 passengers in addition to the driver, "and 20 per cent of seats will be foldable to allow for a suitable room for the movement of wheel chairs of special need persons, enabling further safety and stability on board."
Source: Gulf Today