Res­i­dents hail open­ing of Route 2020 ex­ten­sion

The National - News - - FRONT PAGE - KELLY CLARKE

I go to Satwa or BurJu­man Mall to visit friends. Hav­ing a Metro sta­tion on my doorstep is a big deal for me LAU­REN PIQUERO Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens res­i­dent

Peo­ple liv­ing in neigh­bour­hoods along Dubai Metro’s Route 2020 said the ad­di­tion of a new pub­lic trans­port link would save them a lot of time and money.

Home­own­ers also hope the seven new Metro sta­tions, which will open to the pub­lic in Septem­ber, will help raise the value of their prop­erty.

Long-time res­i­dents liv­ing near the new sta­tions told The

Na­tional they were re­lieved to see an end to the years-long con­struc­tion of the 15-kilo­me­tre track ex­ten­sion.

Peo­ple stay­ing in Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens and Al Fur­jan said they also ex­pected traf­fic con­ges­tion to ease in the usu­ally busy area, be­cause roads that were closed dur­ing con­struc­tion have now re­opened.

“We were liv­ing in Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens since 2010 and moved to Al Fur­jan in 2017,” said Neha Jain, a home­owner in Az­izi Tulip Res­i­dence, which over­looks the new Metro line.

“We are look­ing for­ward to the Metro open­ing up as there will be more ease of move­ment and met­ros are time savers.

“Be­ing a home­owner, I am re­ally hope­ful that the ad­di­tion of a Metro link will lead to some sort of hike in prop­erty value in the fu­ture.

“That is one of the main rea­sons we bought the apart­ment in 2016.”

On Wed­nes­day, 47 months af­ter con­struc­tion started on the track, Sheikh Mo­hammed bin Rashid, Vice Pres­i­dent and Ruler of Dubai, in­au­gu­rated the Metro line.

The Roads and Trans­port Author­ity’s new Route 2020 line starts at Jebel Ali Sta­tion and passes through a num­ber of pop­u­lar Dubai neigh­bour­hoods, in­clud­ing Dubai In­vest­ments Park and Jumeirah Golf Es­tates.

Linked to the main Red Line, it will give com­muters di­rect ac­cess to the Expo site as well as other ar­eas in the city.

Niy­ati Priyam, 32, said the new track would “boost con­nec­tiv­ity”.

“I was liv­ing in Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens for six years and moved to Al Fur­jan two years ago,” the bank worker said.

“I’ve just got used to the con­struc­tion, so to see it com­ing to an end has been great.

“To have a Dubai Metro sta­tion so close to our front door will be con­ve­nient when my fam­ily comes to visit.

“They won’t have to rely on taxis, which can cost a lot when us­ing them daily.”

Fifty trains will serve pas­sen­gers across the seven sta­tions when they open at the end of the sum­mer.

Part of the track, in­clud­ing two sta­tions, will be un­der­ground.

Af­ter liv­ing in Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens for five years, sales as­sis­tant Adil Nadif said it was good to have the op­tion of “hop­ping on the Metro” in­stead of hav­ing to rely on buses and taxis only.

He ex­pects to make the most of the Metro at week­ends.

“Peo­ple liv­ing in this area have been wait­ing a long time for this day. To see it com­plete is great,” he said.

“I can walk to the sta­tion from my house and I’ll use it for leisure pur­poses, like go­ing to the mall, be­cause I have work trans­port al­ready.”

Mr Nadif said traf­fic had al­ready eased af­ter di­ver­sions that were put in place dur­ing the build­ing phase were re­moved.

Lau­ren Piquero, 35, who works at Dubai In­ter­na­tional Air­port, said she of­ten so­cialises with friends in other parts of Dubai.

“I go to Satwa or BurJu­man Mall to visit friends and have to take a bus from Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens, then con­nect to a Metro along Sheikh Zayed Road,” she said.

“Hav­ing a Metro sta­tion on my doorstep is a big deal for me.

“It will save me more time than money, be­cause I don’t spend much on travel now – but that added con­ve­nience is more im­por­tant for me.”

Pawan Singh / The Na­tional The new Dis­cov­ery Gar­dens Metro sta­tion

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