Many Qatar commuters may have noticed a new elevated track system in West Bay that has been going up on Majlis Al Taawon St. over the past two months.
The track is being built by Qatar Rail as part of its metro project for the area, a senior official there told Doha News.
Dubbed an “excavated materials conveyor belt,” it will transport all the dirt, sand and rocks dug out of the ground in order to create the West Bay Central and West Bay South stations.
And, in one of Qatar’s first major construction recycling projects, all the waste produced is expected to be reused during the construction of the long-distance GCC railway, Qatar Rail’s Logistics Director Ahmed Al Kowsi added.
The track system will be utilized over the next eight months as excavation continues to make way for two metro stations on the Red Line North, in the heart of Doha’s business district.
They are two of the 37 stations that are expected to open as part of phase 1 of the Doha Metro in 2019.
During that time, more than 400,000 cubic meters of material will be excavated. While a quarter of it would be reused as back-fill in the construction of the stations, the remainder needs to be taken from the sites, Al Kowsi said.
Traditionally, this would have been done by loading trucks with the waste, and transporting the garbage to a site away from the construction area.
However, that would equate to 62,000 truck trips up and down one of Doha’s busiest thoroughfares, contributing to traffic woes in the area and further polluting the atmosphere.
Planners at Qatar Rail initially had the idea of creating a man-made island using the dug-out material.
Barwa Real Estate was going to develop the QR20 million Oryx island as a 445-acre luxury resort with high-end villas, a water park and a marina for docking cruise ships.
But due to environmental issues, the project was eventually ruled out, and Barwa told Doha News in June last year that it had shelved its plans.
How it works
The conveyor belt system has successfully been used in other busy cities in the world, including London for the construction of its Crossrail project, as well as in Singapore and Hong Kong.
Qatar Rail brought it to Doha so that a part of the city could operate as normal during major development work in its center. Al Kowsi explained:
“When we looked at trucking out all that material in the conventional method, it would have put a big burden on the roads, on people and on the environment. When we proposed the Metro years ago, the main instruction was that we had to keep the city moving.
The conveyor belt method is a fantastic, viable alternative which has been used by other cities and has worked well.”
The system, which will run 2.44 km along Majlis Al Taawon Street as far as Palm Towers, has 5km of conveyor belt and sits 6.3m above the ground, with sections that sit over the roads boxed in to avoid any material dropping onto vehicles below.
Some 1,500 tons of steel and 1,300 cubic meters of concrete were used to build the system, which is currently in the testing phase but is expected to start operating fully by the end of this week.
Once dug out of the ground, the waste material will be loaded onto the conveyor belt and transported above ground to a depot opposite Al Bidda Park.
Everything that has been dug out from the two station sites will be recycled and go toward building embankments for the long-distance railway that will link Qatar to its GCC neighbors, which has a planned completion date of 2018.
“Nothing will be wasted, nothing will be dumped. We will treat then re-use 100 percent of this material, which is perfect quality for what we need for the long distance rail construction. I am proud that we are recycling all of it,” Al Kowsi added.
Once excavation is complete by the end of this year, the system will be dismantled and reused on another Qatar Rail-related project, he continued.
Qatar has been under pressure to recycle more of its construction debris, which makes up a significant percentage of the 7,000 tons of waste the country generates each day.
Late last year, the first recycled road in Qatar was built, using reclaimed and repurposed stones from a construction site and landfill.
The trial was part of research initiative between the public works authority Ashghal, the Ministry of Environment and others to encourage the public and private sector to reuse more of its construction materials where possible.
I thought it was a monorail. but this is a great idea.
Heisenberg, was there a principle of uncertainty there? 😉
That is Breaking Bad Heisenberg not the scientist, although the character choose the name based on the scientist.
I also thought of that….likewise, two thumbs-up for Qatar Rail for coming up with such great idea.
Why does the article call the spoil ‘garbage’? It conveys dirt, mostly sand, from the excavation. Please don’t mis lead the public.
What is the difference?
The definition of garbage:
rubbish or waste, especially domestic refuse.
“garbage littered the estate”
synonyms:rubbish, refuse, domestic refuse, waste, waste material, debris, detritus,litter, junk, scrap, discarded matter; More
worthless or meaningless material or ideas; rubbish.
“a store full of overpriced garbage”
unwanted data in a computer’s memory.
My dictionary of Civil Engineering terms notes “Spoil” to be dirt (soil) or rock excavated from its original location but not used in an embankment or fill. As this is supposed to be used in another project, it will be “spoil” until it becomes “fill” or “embankment(s)”…
Excess material that is disposed of is generally still termed spoil, as it has a use, in landfill sites where garbage is disposed, to cover the daily work area to prevent lightweight garbage from blowing out of the site in the wind, or as bulk material for landscaping etc. (if suitable)
In short, Lesley, please correct the title from “garbage belt” to “spoil conveyor”, I know it’s pedantic, but the material is not garbage.
Still one more incorrect use of ‘garbage’ in the text. Come on DN!
Written by non-experts. For the same reason that R/C aircraft are mistakenly called ‘drones’ by the media.
Kudos. Nice one. I applaud Qatar Rail’s decision not to burden motorists. I do wish that Ashgal can have a similar philosophy – with the many road construction happening, at the same time, around Najma and some parts of Mansoura, even residents are now being bothered by the traffic congestion (as drivers keep honking their horns).
Great idea. 62,000 truck loads kept off the roads will be a big achievement.
On wonders how they’re going to get the material out of the depot near Al Bidda Park? . Trucks will be needed at some point, just not all on MAT street at the start of the WB Towers and the tennis stadium. All the roads near Al Bidda Park are equally busy and lead to more of the same busy streets, as they head inland away from the Corniche
Conveyor crosses the road to the depot (like a pedestrian bridge)
Yes I know that, but the Qatar portion of the Gulf Rail runs further inland than Al Bidda Park, so how will they transport the spoil from the depot to the work site where it will be placed? Magic Carpets?
They will still require trucks to get the spoil out of town, but by taking it to Al Bidda they can operate a “transfer station” to remove the spoil at night and on the weekend thus minimising disruption to the public
I saw an early plan for this project which transported the spoil all the way to the site of the new industrial area that Manateq are building down past Barwa Village to be used for construction. Maybe they’re building the conveyor in stages.
That’s quite a distance, kudos if they do as that will certainly relieve the truck traffic
I don’t think you could build a 445-acre luxury resort with high-end villas, a water park and a marina for docking cruise ships for the cost of QAR 20 million.
The linked story notes the project value as USD 5.5billion (QR20billion)…
It is not a “garbage belt”, it is a conveyor belt.
And it is not for “dug-up waste”, it is for excavated material/soil or “dug-up” soil.
What/Where is that “recycled road”? Anyone?
The recycled road mentioned is the access road to the municipal waste site at Rawdat Rashid….It is however incorrect to say that it was Qatar’s first recycled road….In 2012 Mesaimeer Rd at Abu Hamour was recycled and so was Al Kaserat St In the Industrial Area.
Its great, I saw this conveyor belt 2 days ago and thought the same. Good going Qatar.
The conveyor belt is a great initiative….and great to see the spoil being recycled too…..this is the kind of “outside of the box” thinking we need to get everything built.
No freakin way… 27 posts and not a single Qatar bashing post… Where my boys desertcard and observant one ??
This has to be some sort of record .. I say shabina writes a story about it
Just a question of time before it collapses on the traffic below…..
Thank god for that, I was thinking that this was the train track itself ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
Look like a good plan if it is carried out as described. Excellent.