Spending increase of billions of dirhams blamed on changing design

The Dubai metro has gone billions of dirhams beyond its original 15.5bn dirham ($4.2bn) price tag, it has emerged.

Mattar Al Tayer, executive director of Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) said the construction cost increase ran into billions but he did not reveal the exact figure, adding that it would be announced after the project had been finished in spring 2010. The cost increase was because more than 50% of the project had changed in terms of its design and facilities since its inception to cope with the growing needs of the city, Al Tayer told Gulf News.

The metro is due to open on 9 September, when one branch, the red line, will become operational. There has been controversy surrounding the opening because only 10 of the 29 stations on the red line will open on the 9th. The opening of the red line will be staggered, reportedly while glitches revealed in recent tests are ironed out. These are said to include train and platform doors being out of synch. The Green Line is scheduled to open in March next year.

The Dubai project team includes Kellog Brown & Root and Atkins.

See a video of the Dubai metro plan.