MUSCAT — Muscat Municipality is laying out a specific vision that takes into account the new challenges and futuristic development outlook. Owing to the in the city’s increasing traffic flow, rising number of vehicles, gradual economic growth and construction boom, Muscat Municipality has devised a well-studied scientific plan aimed at ensuring seamless traffic flow and upgrading road networks at the capital city at the standards of sustainable development through implementing a vital road network equipped with cutting-edge technological systems and quality-services with the aim of connecting the different wilayats of Muscat Governorate and ensuring secure passageways while at the same time shortening distances and reducing time.
These include construction of new roads and flyovers, turning existing roundabouts into signallised intersections with international engineering designs at an approximate cost of RO 500 million. This constitutes a major step towards easing the traffic flow and finding solutions to traffic snarls as well as boosting road capacity and security standards.
Ten pilot plans to be opened within 2 years
Vital road projects have been completed during the last couple of years the most prominent of which was the 55-kilometre Muscat Expressway which created a quantum leap in the Sultanate’s road transportation. With 28-kiliometres connecting roads and 12 intersections, the 3-lane motorway cuts through mountain ranges linking the capital city with the Dakhiliyah and Batinah governorates.
Dualisation of Amerat-Qurayat road was completed with a total length of 70 kilometres and 7 intersections. Also completed was Baushar-Al Amerat dual carriageway, a 14-kilometre stretch with 8 kilometres running through tough terrain and mountainous areas, completion of 3 flyovers at Qurum district on Al Nahdha road at Wadi Adai intersection, the roads surrounding Al Fatah square and the intersections at Saih Al Malih. Inauguration of phase 1 of the additional lane from Al Mawalih intersection to the Seeb Palace, opening of the 6-kilometre Ghala-Al Ansab road, completion of dualisation of the Foreign Ministry road, renovation of the Seaside road at Seeb and completion of phase 4 at Bushar, opening of intersections near the Royal Hospital and the Grand Sultan Qaboos Mosque, in addition to pavement of internal roads in different wilayats.
Road projects under implementation
Wadi Addai multi-level intersection project
in full swing
The Directorate-General of Roads at Muscat Municipality is continuing implementation of Wadi Addai multi-level intersection at world-class standards; the project is a major step towards improving the traffic flow as well as finding root solutions to traffic woes in the area.
The project which has so far reached an advanced stage includes turning the Wadi Adai roundabout into a quadruple intersection with traffic lights, construction of a new flyover on top of the existing one for the oncoming traffic from Wadi Adai to the Seeb direction, construction of a new flyover parallel to the existing one for a free traffic movement coming from Ruwi direction and heading to Wadi Adai.
The upper flyover will be supported by steel structure instead of the commonly used concrete support to ensue speedy construction. The project contains a developed rainwater sewer system and lamp posts. Overhead electricity lines and water pipelines affected by the projects have been relocated.
Extra lane at
Muscat Municipality is putting in relentless efforts to complete the 3rd land project from Al Mawalih flyover intersection to Bait Al Barka roundabout at a total length of 18 kilometres on both sides. The aim of the project is to increase the road capacity and smoothen the traffic flow.
The beginning of this year saw the opening of phase 1 of the project for traffic from Al Mawalih flyover intersection up to Al Khoudh flyover intersection at a length of 4.5 kilometres including 10 concrete culverts for rainwater sewer, and three subways to facilitate connection with the service roads as well as three pedestrian bridges.
A new 60-metre footbridge has been constructed at the portion stretching from Al Mawalih flyover intersection
to Al Khoudh flyover intersection.
Implementation of phase 2 of the project is under way with widening of Seeb Palace roundabout and Bait Al Barakah roundabout, construction of a flyover connecting the main road with Al Arsh road leading to the Seeb market without the motorists have to pass through the Palace roundabout, construction of concrete dividers on the main road at the portion from Al Mawalih flyover roundabout to Bait Al Barkah roundabout.
This stage also includes construction of another pedestrian bridge linking North and South Al Mabaila.
Bait Al Falaj road renovation project
Within the framework its projects aimed at solving the problem of traffic congestion at Ruwi district and the surrounding areas, the Directorate-General of Roads is executing the Darsait-Wadi Kabir improvement project which includes flyovers, a subway at Bait Al Falaj besides upgrading the existing intersections at the road. The municipality has embarked on hill-cutting works to widen the bottleneck point at Darsait which is causes traffic congestion especially at rush hours.
The road improvement project also includes construction of separate lanes for traffic heading to Darsait and Wadi Kabir to be detached from other lanes dedicated for traffic heading to Muscat and Muttrah.
The project also includes expansion of the flyover at the interchange close to Hassan Ibn Thabit School to pass over the intersection in front of Star Cinema. It will also see construction of a new subway at the interchange close to Sheraton Oman Hotel, construction of a quadruple intersection with traffic lights, construction of a flyover at the Wadi Kabir roundabout which will be changed into a quadruple interchange with traffic lights as well as construction of two pedestrian bridges on the road.
Muscat Municipality is putting the final touches in the implementation of Athaiba flyover expansion with addition of a third lane to the existing flyover.
The Wadi Athaiba flyover will be substituted with anther longer one and all the roundabouts at the area will be changed into quadruple interchanges with traffic lights to ensure smooth traffic flow.
Appropriate solution are being applied to drain wadi waters at Athaiba and the road leading to the Grand Sultan Qaboos Mosque.
The project also includes addition of a third lane to the flyover on Athaiba roundabout at the Sultan Qaboos Highway and converting the roundabout beneath the flyover to a 4-direction interchange with traffic lights and the addition of a 5th lane on the right-hand side and a U-turn for the traffic coming from both directions, as well expansion of exits and entries on all directions.
The two roundabouts at the Grand Sultan Qaboos Mosque and the Royal Hospital have been changed into 4-direction interchanges.
The Municipality is continuing work on the expansion of Ghubra flyover by adding a third lane and converting the existing roundabout into a 4-direction interchange equipped with traffic lights besides adding extra lanes to ensure smooth the traffic flow at Ghubra district and the areas connected to it. This project includes a third lane to the existing flyover at Ghubra roundabout on the Sultan Qaboos Highway and converting the existing roundabout into a 4-direction interchange with traffic lights as well as adding a 5th lane on the right-hand side of the road and adding a U-turn to reverse the traffic on both sides.
The project will also see dualisation of Madiant Sultan Qaboos road stretching from the third intersection at Muscat Expressway to the interchange at Madiant Sultan Qaboos as well as introducing asignallised intersections on the road.
The dualisation of Bushar road project has gone a long way in the implementation and pavement works.
The project includes dualisation of Baushar road starting from intersection No 6 on Muscat Expressway to the Muscat Hospital roundabout (2 kilometres) besides construction of a pedestrian bridge and parallel service roads, road lighting, concrete dividers and sewer systems.
The project also includes the setting up of traffic lights at the junction leading to Al Muna Heights, Street 22, and the construction of a pedestrian overpass on the side of the road facing the school named Al Imam Al Muhanna bin Sultan in Baushar.
Muscat Municipality is constructing a new flyover which connects the main road of Seeb Al Furusiya Street between Al Khoudh junction and the Palace roundabout in a bid to ease traffic jams at these crossroads and provide alternative exits for Seeb market and northern areas of the Wilayat of Seeb.
The location of the junction has been selected to suit the connectivity of Seeb main road with the highway and Al Furusiya Street in the north (which will be dualised till Seeb Souq), as well as Al Khoud road-Al Mabaila road (Al Salam Street) to help serve the areas of Al Mabaila South and facilitate traffic northwards and southwards.
The project comes as part of a holistic plan by the municipality to ease traffic in Muscat which witnesses intense traffic in all its roads, notably in the Wilayat of Seeb around the market area.
The project also includes the setting up of a flyover on Seeb Street (100 metres) to serve traffic proceeding from Al Furusiya Street and heading to Muscat, as well as traffic proceeding from Al Batinah and heading to Al Furusiya. An entry point and an exit point will be added to Al Furusiya Street and to Al Seeb Street.
Other key aspects of the project include the setting up of a dual carriageway between this junction and Al Khoudh-Mabaila Street (Al Salam) southwards which connects to Al Furusiya dual road on the north and continues till the entry of Seeb Souq. Service roads will be constructed alongside Al Salam Street to the new junction to facilitate entry and exit into the surrounding areas. Landscaping, the planting of trees, lighting, rainwater drainage and the introduction of road safety facilities will be as per top standards.
Due to the great significance of developing a modern road network in the City of Muscat, the municipality here is conducting studies, civil engineering designs and technical plans to implement vital road projects to go in line with the steady growth in population and numbers of vehicles, while at the same time accommodating the boom in urban growth and economic and tourism development.
Al Amerat-Wadi Al Meeh-Yitti road implementation soon
Muscat Municipality said that the Amerat-Wadi Al Meeh-Yitti road will be among the most active roads in the governorate of Muscat since it is designed to lend support to major tourism projects around the areas of Yitti and Al Seifah like Bandar Jissah resort. Other roads in the area are those of Al Amerat-Baushar and Qurayat-Al Seifah.
The Al Amerat-Wadi Al Meeh-Yitti road (16 kilometres) runs from Al Mahaj roundabout in Al Amerat with a median separating the two lanes, culverts to drain rainwater, lightings and other road safety facilities. The new road will be a far cry from the existing road which runs deep in the valley and gets easily inundated during rains, exposing travellers to various risks along Wadi al Meeh.
Service roads on either side of the Grand Mosque road
The Grand Mosque road is a main conduit which runs a middle course between Muscat Expressway and the Sultan Qaboos Street. It assumes significance as it serves Ghala commercial area in a direct way and gives direct access to Muscat International Airport. The importance of the road will continue to increase after the setting up of more establishments and installations on either side.
The importance of this road lies in the support it lends to the Sultan Qaboos Street which runs parallel to it. This service road gives easy access to government and private establishments on either side and it leads to the other roads on the adjoining section of the city’s network, including those of Al Irfan, the Grand Mosque and Muscat Expressway.
Exhibition centre road dualisation includes a median which sets the opposite sides apart, the development of existing junctions, more lightings and drainage systems and other traffic safety systems.
This road falls between Junction 8 along Muscat Expressway and the Grand Mosque road. It allows for smooth traffic both to Muscat International Airport and other roads on the adjoining network serving facilities like Ghala Industrial Estate, the wastewater treatment station, Oman International Exhibition Centre and, in future, the Conference Centre. The project includes the setting up of overpasses and junctions fitted with traffic lights.
Project for an interchange linking the airport entry with Muscat Expressway and the Grand Mosque road
The project, as its name denotes, will give direct access to junction number 9 of Muscat International Airport beside Muscat Expressway. It includes the construction of a junction at the location of the existing Al Irfan roundabout on the end of the Grand Mosque road. The junction will serve existing and future installations in the area with special focus on Hai Al Irfan city quarter. As part of the project, there will be new flyovers to facilitate traffic heading to the airport and other roads in the vicinity.
Al Noor Road Dualisation
Due to the current developments and future prospects of urban growth, Muscat Municipality envisages the expansion of Al Noor road into a full-fledged dualisation. The road serves as a link between November 18 Road and the Sultan Qaboos Street and provides easy access to Al Athaiba North area.
In the near future, more development and investment projects are likely to be added to the area, making it necessary to dualise it to help serve establishments which will come up at the Airport grounds and other investment projects.
The road’s dualisation, which will improve the airport road network schema, includes the construction of junctions, traffic lights, culverts and other road safety facilities.
Development of the November 18 Road
The designing of detailed maps for the improvement of this road is currently under way to help serve the adjoining strips leading to the airport area and the western side of The Wave which fall in Al Athaiba area, besides linking the road to the Al Mawaleh flyover.
The expansion project includes the setting up of three junctions along with flyovers to serve the commercial and tourism projects now and future. The road will have three tracks on either side, starting from Al Anwar road’s traffic lights and ending at the proposed traffic lights on the western side of The Wave project, reaching out to the crossroads of Al Khurais road. The Wave’s road will also have three tracks on either side and its junctions will be improved.
Road safety study
Muscat Municipality has completed the first study on road safety which covered data collection, interviews with drivers, manual enumeration of vehicles, survey of parking areas, an account of direction of traffic, evaluation of the capacity of roads and the drafting of a comprehensive plan for Muscat Governorate till 2025.
The study also touched on the numbers of vehicles owned by families and the number of people aged above 18 who possess vehicles. The study lasted two consecutive months, with people being interviewed between 6.30 am and 8 pm during this period.
The aim of the study was to collect fresh data and help determine the governorate’s need for roads and traffic safety over the next 20 years.
The study is expected to produce a simulation of traffic in Muscat to be known as Traffic Simulation 2030 which takes into account the annual income and eventually develop yearly growth factors. This is the third study conducted in 2011 by Muscat Municipality, which conducted two related studies in 1985 and 1993.
Muscat Municipality recently launched a project for a comprehensive rainwater drainage study spanning all areas of Muscat Governorate.
The study is awarded to a specialised consultancy company which collected data about the course of wadis, the amount of rains, the existing system of drainage, the geographical structure of the governorate and the history of the flowing of wadis.
The first stage of the study spanned the Wilayat of Baushar and the areas of Ghubra and Al Athaiba which are considered the most affected areas during rains due to the different levels of roads and the lack of proper drainage.