Current plans and projects on road network, here, are focused on having a seamless travel for 80 percent of the projected population for some 50 years.
With improved facilities and high end technologies, roads in Qatar are going to less congested over the next few years, according to an expert.
“Our key focus is to create a balance in multi-modal transport system that will cater to all including pedestrians, bicycle users, car drivers etc. We aim to provide a good roadway network for next 50 years; though the plan goes up to 2026, we need to look beyond that period while implementing,” said Osama Freija, Senior Transportation Engineer, Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning.
“The plan is based on the projection that some 80 percent of the population continue to use the private transport while the 20 percent use public transport. The designs are based on the assumption that we will have population growth up to 3.4 million. So we are designing the road to cater to the 80 percent of the future population. Rest of the population is expected to use the metro, bicycles etc,” he told The Peninsula, on sidelines of the second ‘Humanisation of Cities of Tomorrow’ summit, yesterday.
The road network development plan looks at improving major corridors, which will include ring roads being free-flow high-speed facility, and the others as the Khalifa road, Al Rayyan and Dukhan roads.
These road projects will be complemented with the Doha metro plan. “We just can not continue to widen roads and create big dividers and so we aim to shift users into other transport modes and provide alternatives for transport,” he said.
The development plans is also pedestrian and bicycle friendly. “All the road plans now accommodate pedestrians, bicycle and needed sun shading as well. We are providing all the alternatives that people need to use whatever transport mode they choose.”
However, traffic congestion will be still present though not up to the current scale as we have, according to him. Over the next few years, number of new intelligent systems will be introduced on Qatari roads to ensure seamless travel.
“Within a year or two, we will have a system that can sense traffic congestions and suggest alternate routes. The software has been developed by Qatar University Wireless Innovation Center and now they are collecting traffic data with support from Mowassalat and Qtel,” he said.
Added to this, MMUP is currently working with Ashghal to develop a Traffic Management Center, which once completed will have cameras on all the major corridors.
“One can see the congestion happening, alternate routes can be suggested If you do not have the information, you do not know what to do and how to react to it. We are trying to dispense out all these real time traffic information to the people to manage the system, as we do not want to have some roads in full traffic volume, while others are completely empty. The project will take a while to be ready.”
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