Sheikh Hamdan approves ambitious plan to develop Dubai’s Marine Transport Network

Dubai to host prestigious transport summit in 2026
Sheikh Hamdan approves ambitious plan to develop Dubai’s Marine Transport Network
Sheikh Hamdan (middle) approves Dubai Marine Transport Master Plan 2030 (Photo from WAM)

Sheikh Hamdan Bin Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Crown Prince of Dubai and Chairman of the Executive Council, has approved a comprehensive plan to develop Dubai’s marine transport system until 2030. The plan aims to significantly enhance the maritime transport network in Dubai and expand it by 188 percent, with a goal of serving 22 million passengers by 2030.

Sheikh Hamdan expressed his approval through his “X” platform, stating the plan’s objective to increase the number of marine transport users by 51 percent, from 14.7 million to 22.2 million annually.

Additionally, the plan outlines a substantial increase in the total length of the marine transport network, from 55 km to 158 km, representing a 188 percent growth. It also includes the expansion of marine transport stations from 48 to 79, strategically located along the Dubai Creek, Dubai Water Canal, the Arabian Gulf coastline, and various waterfront projects.

Read more: Upcoming transport systems in the UAE you should know about

Efficient network

The marine transport master plan focuses on developing an efficient and well-connected network that caters to the growing transportation needs of Dubai’s residents and visitors. The plan aims to provide convenient and sustainable transportation options, reduce traffic congestion, and enhance connectivity across different parts of the city. Moreover, it aligns with Dubai’s vision to become a global maritime hub and reinforces the Emirate’s commitment to innovation and technological advancements.

First 3D-printed electric abra 

One notable project is the collaboration between the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) and the private sector to manufacture the world’s first 3D-printed electric ‘abra’ (traditional water taxi). Sheikh Hamdan commended the successful trial run of the autonomous abra and acknowledged the remarkable achievements of Hanadi Al Doseri, the first Emirati female captain of a mass marine transport vehicle.

Global Transport Summit 

In a related development, Dubai has been chosen to host the prestigious UITP Global Public Transport Summit in 2026. This will be the second time the city will host the event, following the successful 59th UITP World Congress and Exhibition in 2011. The summit, organized by the International Association for Public Transport, is expected to attract over 1,900 delegates from 100 countries and more than 15,000 attendees. Dubai’s selection as the host city highlights its global reputation, excellent infrastructure, and the confidence of the international community. The city’s extensive public transport projects and commitment to sustainable transportation have played a significant role in securing this opportunity.

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