Purple and Blue lines delayed by credit crunch

RTA Chairman reveals future lines will be delayed by economic downturn

The Blue and Purple lines of the Dubai Metro have both been delayed by the global financial crisis, Mattar Al Tayer, the chairman of Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) confirmed at the opening of the $7.6bn project.

He told reporters at a press conference after the first ever train journey in Dubai that he thought public and private partnerships could be looked at in a bid to raise investments for the two lines which are scheduled to follow the Red and Green lines.

He added that it would take "months and months" for people to get used to the new rail system but insisted the RTA and Serco would run the project efficiently.

He said that the smile he saw on Sheikh Mohammed's face had "given us a lot of enthusiasm", after the Dubai ruler had inaugurated the project and taken the train from Mall of the Emirates to Al Rashidiya.

Asked about linking the metro with other emirates, Al Tayer said it was a federal issue and the Dubai Metro was for the city only.

Abdul Mohsen Ibrahim Younes, CEO of RTA’s executive strategy, added that Salik was one option that could be used to encourage more use of public transport.

Officials revealed that 200,000 cards for travel on the metro had so far been sold.

Read the full version of this story on arabianbusiness.com.

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