Etihad Rail, UAE’s National & Biggest Rail Project Updates

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The implementation of the last package of stage two of the 145 kilometers Etihad Rail track-laying project has officially been completed according to Etihad Rail. This package is over 45 kilometers in Sharjah and over 5.7 kilometers in Ras Al Khaimah.

Connecting the emirate to the main line, the Sharjah section took well over 11.7M work hours over 25 months to complete. Moreover, it employed well about 2,000 engineers as well as workers. On the other hand, the Ras Al Khaimah section utilized well over 1.3M work hours in 25 months to complete. It involved a dedicated team of 350 engineers and workers.

The Deputy Project Manager spoke about the Etihad Rail track-laying project. Khuloud Al Mazrouei said that through the project’s completion, Etihad Rail has made remarkable strides. As a result, the UAE National Rail Network project as a whole is closer than ever to completion.

The project aims to provide a transport network that is sustainable and efficient. Moreover, the project also aims to create a transport network that connects the United Arab Emirates with the region. Concluding, the Deputy Project Manager said that the project plays a key role in opening up new prospects. Especially within the transport as well as logistics industry.

Etihad rail project overview 

The Etihad Rail is a 1,200 km network that is being developed across the United Arab Emirates, from the border of Saudi Arabia to the border of Oman. The project aims to link the centers of industry, trade, and population of the UAE.

The megaproject is projected to grow from running heavy goods services to facilitating the transportation of millions of passengers all within and between the major cities by 2030. The center of operations is currently at the depot in Mirfa, and it services all movements between the track and the trains.

Also Read: The Levenmouth Rail Link Project Updates, Scotland

Dedication to the Etihad Rail Project is impressive as in the coastal village of west Abu Dhabi, technicians, mechanics, and engineers work day and night to ensure the project stays on schedule. The project is also said to contribute to the reduction of carbon emissions by well over 80%

More on the Etihad Rail project

The Etihad Rail Train Project was first established in 2009 and phase one of the project officially became operational in 2016. Since then two tracks that span 264 kilometers have been operating.

The trains have been transporting granulated sulfur from the gasfield in Habshan and Shah that are then exported to Ruwais. On a daily, the trains run across the country with the capacity to carry up to 22,000 tonnes of sulfur. It is said that each train can be able to pull up to 2 wagons. 

When completed the railway network will be able to link the main centers of industry and population across the UAE region. It will also end up playing an essential role in the planned railway network across the entire Gulf region.

This will result in a connection happening between the seven emirates of the country to the neighboring five GCC states. Phase two of the Etihad Rail Train Project will manage to link Saudia Arabia and the UAE from Ghuerifat to Fujairah through Mussafah located in Khalifa Port and Jebel Ali Port. 

March 2022

Stage two construction of the Etihad rail network well on track

Stage two of the Etihad rail network project is progressively, still on track. This came to light when the chairman of the Abu Dhabi Crown Prince’s Court and Etihad Rail, Sheikh Theyad bin Mohammed bin Zayed Al Nahyan visited the project site. 

The visit served to review the project’s progress of rail construction from the Al Suyoh area to Sakamkam. The prince confirmed that the project extending from Fujairah Port and Ras Al Khaimah to Sharjah was still on a great track.

The project will feature a bridge in the Al Suyoh Area in Sharjah. The bridge will be followed by a stop in the Al Bithnah area in Fujairah to visit Al Bithnah Bridge. Additionally, the project will also feature a number of tunnels. These tunnels will be across the Al Hajar Mountains in Fujairah. 

The National Rail Network Project will help Etihad Rail achieve economic prosperity through the development of the National Rail network. This falls well in line with the company’s goal of shaping the future of the transport sector.

Following the inspection tour, Sheikh Theyab witnessed yet another significant achievement for the project. This was the official signing of an agreement between Spain’s CAF and Etihad Rail, valued at $326 million. Important to note is that the agreement is with one of the world’s leaders in the railway sector. The agreement included the design, manufacture, supply, and maintenance of passenger trains for the project.

April 2022

Plans announced for ICAD railway freight terminal

Etihad Rail has announced plans for the construction of the Industrial City of Abu Dhabi-ICAD railway freight terminal which will provide innumerable benefits to well over 780 business partners located in the Dubai Industrial megacity as well as its surrounding areas.

The announcement was made in a ceremony that was attended by Etihad Rail CEO, His Excellency Engineer Shadi Malak, the CEO of TECOM Group, and also the director-general of the Dubai Development Authority, His Excellency Malek Al Malek, COO of TECOM Group Saud Abu Aishawareb, the Managing Director of Dubai Industrial City among key representatives and officials.

The project is rooted and centered around the motivation to reduce costs and improve efficiencies. It will occupy a total area of 5.5 million square feet and have a capacity of five million tonnes as well as facilitate a connection between the major manufacturing warehouses and centers that are within the Dubai Industrial City rail network.

A statement revealed that the terminal is a collaboration between the Dubai Industrial City and Etihad Rail.

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The ICAD railway freight terminal to cement UAE’s position in international trade

The facility is said to contribute to cementing the UAE’s position in international trade. It will also boost the country’s global competitiveness in the logistics, trade, manufacturing, and investment industries.

The ICAD railway freight terminal project aligns with the United Arab Emirate’s Railways Programme which aims to achieve and facilitate trade via the connecting of the country’s manufacturing and industrial centers, alongside opening up new trading routes. 

The new rail freight terminal will not only complement the UAE and Dubai’s advancement in infrastructure and providing of the state of the art transport, but it will also solidify the country’s position as a gateway connector to South Asia, the Middle East, and North Africa. 

Jul 2022

Construction of Etihad Rail’s first 1km rail marine bridge complete

The construction of the first one-kilometer rail marine bridge along the Etihad rail, UAE’s national & biggest rail route has been completed. This marks a major milestone for the project which was approximately 75% complete in May. 

The construction of the bridge, connecting Abu Dhabi’s Khalifa Port to the mainland involved the installation of T-beams. Well, about 100 T-beams were installed while building the marine bridge. The bridge is reportedly the very first of its kind within the network. 

The Rail Network project boasts a workforce of 320 workers. Furthermore, the project has clocked in well about one million manhours, thus far. Additionally, the project’s construction has been divided into two stages. The second stage features four packages. The bridge is a part of Package B of the second stage.

Taking a step further, the project also ensured that all works carried out to comply with the top environmental as well as global standards.

The Deputy Project Manager commented on the project. Kuloud Al Mazrouei expressed that the project will improve the flow of goods to and within the region. As a result, the deputy manager added, that the project would also help reduce trade and shipping costs. The Rail Network will run for a total of 1,200 kilometers across the United Arab Emirates. 

Sep 2022

ICAD railway freight terminal connected to UAE National Rail Network

Construction works for the rail link between the ICAD railway freight terminal and UAE National Rail Network have officially been completed. The successful completion of the connection between the railway freight terminal at the Industrial City of Abu Dhabi (ICAD) was officially announced by Etihad Rail.

The link runs to the port of Fujairah on the eastern coast of the borders of Saudi Arabia. Additionally and important to note that it passes through key manufacturing hubs as well as urban centers.

Scope and expectations for the project

Mainly the project involved tracklaying works. However,  Etihad rail also ran all the necessary operational tests on the line.

ICAD railway freight terminal is reportedly the largest inland freight railway terminal within the country as well as the UAE National Rail Network. Its completion and connection to the UAE national rail network align superbly with the goals of the UAE Railway Programme.

It aims to connect key centers of industry and production within the country as well as open new trade routes. The program also aims to facilitate the population’s movement(s) as best as possible.

Comments on the ICAD railway freight terminal and UAE National Rail Network connection project

The Executive Director of the Rail Relations Sector at Etihad Rail spoke about the project. Mohammed Al Marzouqi noted that the connection of the freight terminal at ICAD with Etihad Rail’s main line marks the opening of a long-awaited door.

The Executive Director said the connection ensures their readiness to begin the provision of logistics solutions. These solutions would be through the linking of Abu Dhabi with several industrial centers. Additionally, Mohammed Al Marzouqi stated that the project has brought the firm closer to providing a fully integrated transportation system. The system according to Al Marzouqi cuts across not just Abu Dhabi but the emirates as a whole.