Doha metro tenders due by September 2011

Qatar Rail Co official shares plans; an estimated 7000 jobs could be created across entire network

Tenders for the first phase of the US $25 billion Doha Metro system are due to be launched in the next “one to two months”, according to Ghanim Hassan Ali Al Ibrahim, group director for projects at Qatar Railways Co.

All contracts, split into 19 separate packages and worth at least $1 billion each, will be awarded sometime in 2012. Al Ibrahim says the final package must be awarded by the end of 2012 to allow enough time for construction; which is estimated to take eight years, with a further year scheduled for testing the completed system.

It is described as “one of the most advanced rail transit systems in the world”.

The 85km network will be a key element of Qatar’s $100 billion of infrastructure developments ahead of the 2022 World Cup. Prior to the successful World Cup bid, completion was estimated for 2025.

Despite the huge price tag reported by the Qatari press, information on the Doha Metro website values the project at $3 billion. PPP is being considered as a financing option.

In a press conference in March Etihad Rail CEO Richard Bowker, said PPP would not be viable for the UAE’s national rail network because of the delays caused by finalising contractual arrangements.

The completed network will include an   east coast link, a high-speed link, a freight link and a light rail system. It will comprise four lines; Lusail Light Rail System, comprising 30km around the currently un-construction 38 square kilometre Lusail City; with further routes serving Education City, West Bay and Doha Airport and conference centre.

The metro is part of a $42.9 billion railway project initiated by the state, which also incorporates the national rail network, freight network and a proposed direct link via the Friendship Bridge to Bahrain, once completed. The projects are expected to create 7000 jobs.



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