Friday, May 25, 2007

Spaghetti Interchange

At the moment the RTA are my new best friend. Over the last week interchange five at Dubai Marina as been gradually opening up. Having watched it being built over the last year and also having been stuck in every changing contra-flows and diversions it has now made a fantastic difference to Dubai Marina residents.

Prior to the interchange - in order to get on the Sheikh Zayed road heading to Dubai you had to make fairly bleak choices. First drive through the Marina and then right on to Al Sufouh street, through three sets of lights and then onto the following interchange. This on a traffic free day would take between fifteen and twenty minutes. The other option was to drive in the opposite direction to Ibn Battuta Mall and u-turn there - not ideal but could be fairly quick, say ten to fifteen minutes.

Now with the interchange open - getting on to the Dubai bound Sheik Zayed Road is a revelation. You just filter off to the right and before you know it you are on to seven lanes of highway bliss. This cuts at least ten minutes off my journey but more importantly it is dramatically reducing the traffic in and around the Marina. Which is a good thing as the many thousand JBR apartments are starting to be handed over now and the Marina will see a dramatic influx of new residents over the next six months.

One interesting side effect to the very large interchange opening up - is now the Taxi drivers are totally confused as to which way to go. It now requires constant navigation advice as to which lane, slip road or tunnel they should be aiming at with the end result or numerous less well guided taxis weaving about just before road forks, all looking a little confused. I am sure they will all be up to speed soon.

Here is an impression of the new Interchange 5 from the Gulf News 10/5/2007


Seabee said...

The new Interchange 5, or whatever number it now is, sure has made a difference hasn't it. I spent a few hours on Friday trying the different flyovers just to see where they took me, and they all seem to work pretty well.
And we have the other one, Interchange 6?, at the other end of the Marina being built at the usual speed, so we soon, presumably, will be able to come and go from there without having to drive through the Marina.
The real test is when JBR starts to fill, and the hotels are up and running. (Apart from the JBR hotels there's one at Marina Mall, another round behind Cascades). I still think the roads & bridges in the Marina itself won't cope.

Aaron said...

Interchange 5.5/6 at the far end of the Marina will also make an important difference as with the current diversions it has made access road become "main" roads.

The traffic no doubt will get very busy later this year - but with any luck the metro will at least give an alternative the year after!

nzm said...

Do you think that the metro will make a difference around the marina end?

I seriously believe that the people who live in the marina won't be users of it, but maybe the service people will - although at the moment, they are being picked up from their paid-for accommodation and shuttled to their workplaces which may still be the preferred option.

I think that the metro will be mostly used by white collar office workers in administerial positions, and, if they can afford it, the labourers.

Aaron said...

I for one will be using if I need to go any further than Emirates Towers...the thought of doing it on a Thursday evening now gives me the willies!

Alan said...

Do you have any idea when to expect completion of the slip road that crosses the water to Sheraton?
Also any idea if this bridge will have a pedestrianised section (i.e. from KG tower to the sheraton)? Thanks J