Muscat: Locals and expats in Oman are hopeful that the upgrades planned for the road connecting Rusayl to Bidbid will improve traffic in the area.
Two projects involving the upgrades to the road were recently announced by Ahmed bin Mohammed Al Futaisi, the Minister of Transport, one that expands the existing road, and a second that connects to the Batinah Expressway, in order to reduce traffic congestion and provide additional connectivity to the country’s road network.
While the existing road consists of two lanes, the upgraded road will feature four on each side. This means that more vehicles will be able to use it, and that there will be less traffic congestion because of more space available to motorists.
Mohammed Shawqy, an Egyptian engineer who lives near and works in the Rusayl Industrial Estate, said, “There are many big lorries that use this road because the factories and industries are nearby and this road is the one you need to take if you are looking to go there. While I understand that they are important, it can sometimes inconvenience us because the large number of trucks causes a traffic build-up. This is particularly challenging in the morning when we have to get to work, or take our children to school, but I think this new road will help with that situation.”
“It does mean more people will use this road, because it will have stronger links with other areas of the country and will be a more convenient way to travel, but more lanes means it will be easier for us to drive,” he added.
Ahmed Al Shenawi, who works as a manager in the area, added, “We do face some traffic near this area in the morning so we have to plan to start our journeys a bit early. If this new road is being built, it means that we will have better facilities to use so I fully welcome the upgrades coming to this road.”
The Minister of Transport said that the signing of the two projects confirmed that the government was paying attention to continue the development of the road network in Oman.
“The traffic level on this road has almost reached its full capacity, therefore, an upgrade is due for it, and upgrading this from two lanes on each side to four lanes will ease the movement of vehicles during congestion and periods of traffic,” said Al Futaisi. “The other project will link the Batinah Expressway with this road, and so will give road access to the expressway from these wilayats and the existing roads. This road will also contain a link to the Khazaen Economic City, which is an important development to boost growth of Khazaen, and it will also see upgrades to certain roundabout on the current Al Batinah Road, which will be linked to the expressway.”
“We are hoping that the two projects, along with others in the coming months, will boost the construction industry, especially in the road sector and will give the private sector some projects that will help them develop their businesses,” he added. “The government is continuing to develop the road network, so that it can have strong connections that give Oman a good spot when it comes to transport rankings around the world.”
In addition, the road project will also extend the current Muscat Expressway-Sharqiyah Expressway interchange by 27 km, so as to provide easier access to vehicles. This road, considered vital by the Oman government, sees traffic during rush hour reach 3000 cars per hour, and upon completion, this road will be able to accommodate 8030 cars per hour at peak capacity, and be able to continue to function at optimal efficiency for the next twenty years.
The signing of these agreements comes within the framework of the Ministry of Transport’s continued efforts towards raising the efficiency of roads in the Sultanate, as they represent a very important role in laying the foundations of infrastructure for economic and social development and employment opportunities in the Sultanate.