HE Mattar Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), revealed that public transport means in Dubai have lifted 277.91 million riders in the first half of this year. The figure shows a steady growth compared with the ridership reported during the same period last year amounting to 275.242 million riders. It translates into a current daily average of 1.535 million riders. These riders are served by RTA’s public transport means comprising the metro, tram, buses and marine transit means (abra, ferry, water taxi, water bus) as well as taxis (Dubai Taxi and Franchise companies).

Metro leading the Pack

Dubai Metro has accounted for the biggest share of public transport users (37.17%), followed by taxis (31.61%), and public buses (27.48%). The Dubai Metro Red and Green Lines have lifted 103.292m riders during the first half of this year, which compares well with the number recorded during the same period last year of 100.558m riders. The Red Line accounted for 66.862m riders whereas the Green Line has served 36.43 m riders. The Dubai Tram ridership clocked 3.207m riders; almost the same number reported last year.

Interchange stations of the Dubai Metro lines have received the largest number of riders. Burjuman Station has served 6.369m riders, and the Union Station has received 5.488 riders.

JLT to the Fore

The pecking order of the busiest stations on the Red Line has changed with JLT Station jumping to the top of the list, serving 5.524m riders, ranking ahead of Al Rigga Station (4.921m riders), and Burj Khalifa-Dubai Mall Station (3.934m riders). On the Green Line, Al Fahidi Station topped the list by serving 4.079m riders, next comes Baniyas Station (3.302m riders), followed by the Stadium Station (2.896m riders).

During the first half of 2018, public buses have served 76.379m riders, marine transport means have ferried 7.183m riders, and 87.849m riders have used the Dubai Taxi service.

Sustainable Growth

Al Tayer was delighted with the healthy growth of public transit means of the RTA, which are shaping into a backbone and the first choice for peoples mobility in Dubai. “The diverse and extensive projects undertaken by RTA have contributed to the growth of public transport riders. The share of public transit means (metro, tram, buses, marine modes) in peoples mobility has leapfrogged from 6% in 2006 to 16.4% in 2017. When adding taxis, the rate will jump to 25.8%. The plan is to sustain the growth of public transport ridership of the said four modes to 20% by 2020 and 30% by 2030,” explained Al Tayer.

Integrated Solutions

Al Tayer noted that RTA’s concept of integrated mobility was an integral part of projects for widening roads networks, crossings, and improvements of public transport. Achieving smooth mobility also hinges on the use of sophisticated traffic and transport systems and the introduction of policies to curb the semi-total reliance on private vehicles by migrating people to the use of public transit means. Policies also include car-pooling, especially in Dubai where car ownership rate is one car per every two persons of the population