Abra stations to be sited by Sheraton and UK embassy

Dhs15 million second phase of the Dubai Creek beautification project to take one year

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By  Eudore Chand Published  October 2, 2004

Dubai Municipality will begin the second phase of its floating pontoons project in Dubai Creek from October. The project is part of an initiative to develop the Creekside. Designs are complete and it is expected that the project will cost more than Dhs15 million to implement. The aim of the project is to make it convenient and safe for women and children who use the abras on a regular basis. More than 15 million people use the abras annually, which means nearly 40 000 passengers use them on a daily bases. This figure climbs up to 60 000 during peak days, particularly on Fridays. The latest phase includes development of the four existing abra stations on both sides of the Creek and constructing new stations. The existing stations are those near Deira Spice Souq, the Al Sabkha, Bur Dubai and Dubai Old Souq. The two new stations would be constructed near Deira Sheraton Hotel and opposite the British Embassy in Bur Dubai. The municipality has approved construction of the two new stations due to the growing importance of these two areas as well as the need for a large number of people who visit the several government departments and institutions on the Deira side such as Etisalat, Dubai Municipality, Dubai Chamber of Commerce and Industry, Dubai Department of Economic Development, Dubai Lands Department among others. Besides, the new stations would also ease parking problems in these areas. The municipality’s first phase saw the installation of floating pontoons in the Bur Dubai Abra Station (near Bank of Baroda) on an experimental basis in January 2003. In the second phase of the project, several modifications will be undertaken at the existing Abra stations including landscaping and beautification works and incorporating traditional architectural elements that match the historical importance of each area. The civic body will weigh various safety options while setting up the floating pontoons. These include a study of the existing access and exit points, passenger flow, traffic movement in the area and its impact on the Abra location. The two stations at Al Seef and Bani Yas will be constructed during the second phase of the project, which is to be complete in 12 months.

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