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Dubai to get more bus and taxi lanes
Time and distance to improve with the expansion of dedicated bus lanes
If you still face delays in bus times and taxi arrivals, these delays are likely to be reduced in the near future as a network of dedicated lanes expanding over 30km is in the pipeline in Dubai.

The Road and Transport Authority (RTA) has recently embarked on Phase III of the bus priority project, which aims to improve the time and distance consumed by buses within the emirate. Part of the project is the addition of lanes or parts of lanes that are exclusively dedicated for buses and taxis.

Currently, the RTA is assessing the need for dedicated bus lanes, looking where the bus is facing difficulties to manoeuvre or delays in the schedule, explains Yousef Al Ali, CEO, Public Transportation Agency (PTA) at RTA.

Focus areas are Bur Dubai, Deira and some of the new developments in the city. “The projected areas have a total of 30 km in corridor length, but the actual bus priority coverage will depend on the need, as it will take up some parts of the corridors.”

Dedicated bus and taxi lanes were first introduced in Dubai in 2010, when 5.6km of dedicated lanes were created in densely populated and congested areas. A year later, another 2km was earmarked for bus and taxi use.

“The overall distance of bus lanes in the emirate is 7.6km,” said Al Ali, explaining that this distance covers multiple corridors that include parts of Khalid bin Waleed Road, Al Khaleej Road, Al Mankhool Road, Al Ghubaiba Road, Al Naif Road and Al Ittihad Road.

Talking about the success of the dedicated lanes in these areas, Al Ali elaborated that trip duration on these routes has been reduced with 30-50 per cent, while the bus performance in terms of arrival on schedule was raised to 70 per cent. Furthermore, resource efficiency and utilisation of assets are aspects that support further expansion of the dedicated lanes.

“The new bus priority phase will form a network of dedicated lanes that will allow to maximise the benefits of this project and will integrate with the current areas developed,” said Al Ali.

Apart from the expansion of dedicated lanes, new technologies will be applied to increase the effectiveness of the bus and taxi only concept, among which new methods of monitoring violations made by the regular traffic.

Recently the RTA and Dubai Police agreed to implement surveillance systems on board of public buses or cameras that would monitor private vehicles using dedicated bus lanes.

A Dh600 fine can be imposed when such a violation is made.