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Ashghal

Public Works Authority (Ashghal) is taking up new infrastructural projects to meet expanding need to urbanise the country’s landscape.

Euromonitor International reported, population of Qatar is to see an addition of 2.3 million people by the year 2030, with migration being the major driving factor. Hence, the existing infrastructure will not suffice to accommodate the additional population for which Qatar is preparing itself.

Infrastructural projects are also undertaken to increase Qatar’s capability to effectively host 2022 FIFA World Cup and further achieve its developmental objectives streamlined by Qatar National Vision 2030 by creating a sustainable infrastructure.

Since, traffic congestion is a major problem in Qatar, Ashghal has announced two road projects under its Infrastructure development valued $27 billion.

The  first road project, the Expressway Programme, expected to deliver approximately 800km of safe and efficient roads through the implementation of over 30 projects divided into 46 contracts, includes integrated infrastructure network equipped with state-of-the-art, reliable underground utilities, including storm water networks, electrical services and intelligent transport systems. The programme currently has 10 projects under construction with a total value of over $13 billion.

The second is the nationwide local area infrastructure programme to develop and upgrade local roads, drainage and new infrastructure across the country’s four regions namely BaniHajer North (Rawdat Egdaim), the Al Gharrafa Sewage Scheme and Rawdat AbalHeeran.

Ashghal is also planning to upgrade its existing infrastructure towards sustainability after receiving two sustainability awards, three-star GSAS certification in design and construction in MENA region by the Gulf Organization for Research and Development (GORD). It will  be focussed on educational buildings, including schools and kindergartens, and health buildings, embodying the principle of conservation of natural resources, encouraging the use of recycled materials, and promoting the efficient use of water and renewable energy.

Ashghal has also announced plans to build 60-70 healthcare centres over the span of next 10 years of which, ongoing projects include four health centres in Muaither, Al Waab, Al Wajba and Al Jamaa, all of whom are achieving steady progress on schedule.

However, such infrastructural development planned to achieve long term goals, are bound to attract a lot of public inconvenience during the implementation process. Hence, it is important that Ashghal simultaneously plans to cause minimal public inconvenience and ensure that the project of sustainable infrastructure development is in sync with protection of labour rights too.

Penn State/Flickr

Photo for illustrative purposes only.

Ashghal has started work this week on converting Al Luqta roundabout near Education City into a multi-level intersection.

Diversions are already in place at the junction of Al Beday St. and Makkah St. while construction is underway.

The temporary road layout is expected to be in place for at least the next 18 months.

The roundabout was a popular route that connected Al Gharafa and Education City with the residential districts of Madinat Khalifa and Al Luqta.

What’s changed

Motorists driving north-south on Al Beday St. should be able to maintain their regular commute.

However, new traffic lights and road layouts mean diversions for those commuting between central Doha and Education City on Al Makkah St.

Ashghal

Al Luqta diversion

According to Ashghal, drivers heading toward Education City will need to turn left onto Al Beday St., then right to Al Maqareen St. before heading back to Al Makkah St. via Ummat Suwayy St.

Those driving toward West Bay from Education City can take the same route in reverse, Ashghal said.

The diversions are to enable the construction of a new, multi-level intersection to replace the old roundabout, which should help to improve traffic flow and reduce road congestion in the area.

The temporary road configuration is expected to be in place until early 2019, Ashghal added.

Congestion busting

Significant demolition has been underway along the length of Al Beday St. and the southern section of Al Markhiya St. since the early summer.

Many buildings along the western side of the road have been knocked down, and the road is expected to be widened.

A faster-flowing route there could help to relieve some of the heavy congestion faced by the adjacent Expressway. That road struggles with long tail-backs of traffic, particularly at rush hour.

Kombizz Koshani/Flickr

Sports Roundabout in its old days.

Roundabouts were once common landmarks in Doha, but are fast becoming a memory due to a rapidly rising population and the need for better roads.

Just recently, Ashghal converted TV roundabout to a junction, while construction continues to create the new Sports intersection.

The second phase of this work should be finished by next month, Ashghal previously said.

Will the new diversions near Education City affect your commute? Thoughts?

Ashghal

Olympic (Sports) Intersection

After dismantling Olympic (Sports) Roundabout over the summer, Ashghal has now opened the junction up for three lanes of traffic in each direction.

The move comes as the iconic roundabout in Al Sadd is converted into a signalized intersection.

Phase 1 of that work is now complete, and included putting up new traffic signals, installing a drainage network and upgrading utility pipes.

Ashghal

Olympic (Sports) Intersection

“Opening Phase 1 of the project provides the same level of traffic flow that the roundabout used to provide, but after completion of Phase 2, the traffic flow will be much better,” Ashghal said in a statement.

Al Rayyan Road

For the next several weeks, Ashghal will be working on adding left-turn traffic signals and a u-turn lane.

It aims to complete Phase 2 sometime next month.

Kombizz Koshani/Flickr

Sports Roundabout in its old days.

Sports R/A had long been one of the busiest junctions in Doha because it links Al Rayyan Road with Mohammed bin Thani St. and Jawaan St. next to the Hamad General Hospital complex.

It is now going the way of Oryx, Slope, TV, Burger King, Clock Tower, Rainbow/Arch, Crazy, Parachute and VIP, among others.

The renovation of the roundabout is also one of the last stages of a QR4.5 billion upgrade of Al Rayyan Road.

According to Ashghal, that project will be completed in August 2018.

Thoughts?