Traffic woes in Qatar are going to get a lot worse before they get better, regional business intelligence group MEED has warned.
That’s because the billions of dollars of mega projects that Qatar is embarking on before the 2022 World Cup will require a countless amount of steel and other construction materials. All of that will have to be transported via trucks, MEED states.
Just one of those projects, QRail’s Doha Metro, is expected to create some 4,000 truck movements daily, the company has said. The upcoming $5.5 billion new sea port and already underway construction at Lusail and Doha expressways, as well as other billion-dollar developments, will also contribute to the congestion.
There were 287,500 vehicles on the road in Qatar in 2000, compared to 656,686 in 2010 (a more than 130 percent increase). Meanwhile, Qatar’s population has nearly tripled in the last decade, and the number of road accidents jumped some 160 percent.
The effects that the extra vehicles will have on the already crowded roads is expected to mirror the type of snarls Dubai experienced years ago, MEED states:
Any congestion will have a detrimental effect on the economy. In 2006, Dubai estimated that congestion cost the city about $1bn a year, and Doha could expect a similar hit.
The good news is Dubai shows that metros and new highways do successfully alleviate congestion once they are operational.
But for at least the next half decade, expect long commutes.