The Dubai Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) revealed that over 275 million commuters used public transit means in Dubai during the first half of the year.
The figure represents an increase when compared to the same period last year, when commuter numbers reached over 273 million.
Public transport options in Dubai include the Dubai metro, Dubai tram, public buses, marine transit modes (abra, ferry, water taxi, water bus) and taxicabs (Dubai Taxi and franchise companies).
Dubai Metro accounted for the biggest share of users with 36.4 per cent, followed by taxis (31.7 per cent) and public buses (28 per cent).
The Red and Green lines of the Dubai Metro lifted 100.558 million riders in the first half of this year, up from 96.486 million in H1 2016.
Meanwhile the Dubai Tram transported 3.087 million commuters – also up from 2.535 million during the same period last year.
Over 77.69 million passengers rode on public buses in H1 2017, compared with 69.92 million users in H1 2016.
Marine transit modes transported 6.638 million passengers between January to July, while taxis lifted 87.79 million passengers during the period.
“The public transport means have now become the backbone of people mobility in various parts of Dubai, and the preferred transit option for a huge segment of Dubai residents and visitors,” said Mattar Al Al Tayer, director-general and chairman of the RTA.
“The huge and diverse projects undertaken by the RTA have contributed to the sustained increase in public transport ridership that has leapfrogged from 6 per cent in 2006 to 16 per cent in 2016, and if we add taxis, the share would shoot to as high as 24 per cent.”
Looking ahead, the RTA is aiming to increase the share of public transport (metro, tram, buses, and water transport) to 20 per cent by 2020, and 30 per cent by 2030.
“The strategic and executive plans for roads and transport systems are based on the principle of integrated services… in terms of improving and broadening roads network and crossings, and upgrading various components of mass transit systems such as the metro, tram, buses and water transport means,” said Al Tayer.
“It also depends on upgrading the technology used in traffic and transport systems to ensure the optimal utilisation and highest efficiency of roads and mass transit systems, adopting policies capable of reducing the semi-total reliance of the public on private vehicles and increasing their reliance on other transit systems including public transport.
“RTA plans are also focused on encouraging journey-sharing practices especially in a city like Dubai where people ownership of private vehicles is as high as one vehicle per two persons,” he added.