Mattar Al Tayer, Chairman of the Board and Executive Director of the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), recently received members of the International Youth for Public Transport Foundation as well as members of the Dubai Youth for Public Transport (Y4PT). The youth act as ambassadors in raising awareness about the importance of public transport around the world and in Dubai.
The gathering was attended by Alain Flausch, Secretary General of the UITP; Mohammed Obaid Al Mulla, RTA Board Member and Chairman of the Higher Committee of the MENA Transport Congress and Exhibition; and Alessandra Gorini, Executive Director of the International Youth for Public Transport Foundation. Al Tayer wished the visiting youth members a pleasant stay in the UAE and invited them to benefit from their visit to the country by exploring the rich cultural, historical and urban potential found in abundance in the UAE, besides acquainting themselves with the RTA’s experience in providing an integrated infrastructure for public transport systems.
“The RTA has developed a master integrated plan for uplifting public transport systems in Dubai emirate focused on raising the profile of Dubai as a pioneering city worldwide and a suitable, safe and sustainable place for living. The plan was put into action through a host of projects in the fields of rail, buses, marine transit modes, traffic systems and road networks. The Dubai Metro, comprising the Red and Green Lines, is the backbone of public transport in Dubai. The Metro ridership currently hovers around 450-500,000 riders per day, and Dubai is bracing itself for another quality addition to its rail network service offerings with the launch of the Dubai Tram project; the third project worldwide powered by ground cabling system stretching all over the track, with no overhead cables involved to provide electric feed,” said Al Tayer.
“Public buses play a key role in providing mobility services to the population of the emirate with a fleet comprising 1,572 buses, including 347 articulated buses, and 170 double deckers. The RTA also operate marine transit modes consisting of 155 abras, 10 water buses, 10 water taxis, and 10 ferries; which play a vital role in the mobility of people in the emirate,” noted Al Tayer.
“These integrated public transport systems have contributed to doubling the share of public transport in the mobility of people from 6 per cent in 2006 to as much as 13 per cent in 2013, as the number of public transport riders rocketed from 163 million riders in 2006 to 440 million riders last year, and public transport ridership in the emirate has touched 1.2 million riders per day,” explained Al Tayer.
Al Tayer expressed hope that the Y4PT Foundation, and the Dubai Y4PT will join hands in building a global environmental system for youth leaders who share common values, and who diffuse public transport culture.
The 34 youth from 19 countries who attended the gathering with Al Tayer commended the RTA’s initiative in inviting them to attend the events of the MENA Transport Congress & Exhibition 2014, stating that they were impressed with what they had seen in terms of a unique development pattern in Dubai, and hailed the public transport system provided by the RTA.