Dubai’s Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) has said that work on the Dhs1.5 billion Business Bay Canal extension project will begin by the first quarter of 2013.
Project contracts will be awarded by the end of this year, the RTA said in a statement.
The project, which will stretch 2.8 kilometres in length and is up to 100 metres wide, will see an extension of the canal from Sheikh Zayed Road to the Arabian Gulf.
Dubai’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed Bin Rashid Al Maktoum approved the project last month and directed to have it completed in two years.
Mattar Al Tayer, chairman and executive director of the RTA, who recently visited the project site, has ordered that it be prioritised.
The canal will pass through Sheikh Zayed Road, Safa Park, Al Wasl Road, Jumeirah 2, and Jumeirah Road. As part of the project, bridges up to 8.5 metres high will also be constructed on the roads intersecting with the canal.
Al Tayer said that the work team will conduct a comprehensive study on traffic movement in the affected areas to ensure a smooth traffic flow once construction begins.
Marine transit stations will also be constructed throughout the canal to ease public movement.
The project has been divided into three contracts. The first covers drilling and landscaping works as well as the construction of marine transit stations. The other two contracts relate to road and bridge projects.
The project also includes the construction of roads and jogging tracks around the canal and three pedestrian bridges across it. Designed to become a tourist attraction, the project may also include floating hotels and restaurants on both sides.
Al Tayer said that he hoped the project would boost Dubai’s chances of winning the bid to host the World Expo 2020.