KUWAIT: Work on a planned $7 billion metro project will be postponed for at least 18 months as the government undertakes a wide ranging study of the country’s land based transport requirements. Sources in Kuwait said that the project, which has been planned independently of the government, must now be folded into the national transport strategy.
As per report, a consortium led by the UK’s Atkins, US’ Parsons Brinckerhoff and local firm Gulf Consult, has been chosen by Kuwait municipality to undertake the country wide transport master plan. The formal signing of the 15 month contract is due to take place in February 2009, with the group submitting its findings in the summer of 2009. As a result, no progress on the metro can be made until then at the earliest.
The metro has been developed by the Kuwait Overland Transport Union. A feasibility study of the project was completed in May 2008 by Spanish transport consultant INESCO and local project management firm Kuwait United Development.
Kuwait Overland originally said the plan would be presented to the government for approval before the end of 2008, along with its proposal for a $7 billion national rail project to form Kuwait’s section of the proposed GCC railway.
However, one source close to the metro project said that it will now have to wait until the master plan is completed to see if it recommends building either a light rail or a metro scheme. He said that “The metro network is not a government initiative. It has some supporters in government, but while Kuwait Overland has been planning the project, Kuwait Municipality has been preparing invitation documents for the public transport master plan.”
– MEED January 24, 2009
This is old news, but nobody really knows what’s going on with regards to the progress of this project. The map we’ve seen floating around was apparently part of a study commissioned by the Kuwait Overland Transport Union, a private entity. It seems now that the study is being incorporated into the government’s ‘transportation master plan’. I would urge that these studies be made public and a transparent discussion be initiated involving all interested participants.
Here is a quick summary of the progress of the project from Zawya.com:
- In January 2009, the project was delayed for about 18 months since the government of Kuwait is conducting a study of the transportation networks in Kuwait (this country-wide study will be done by the consortium of Atkins, Parsons Brinckerhoff, and Gulf Consult). In 2011, the ITB for the construction contracts is expected to be issued. The completion of the project is expected in 2016 (The original completion date was in 2014).
- In August 2008, the higher committee of the cabinet approved the feasibility study.
- In May 2008, the feasibility study was completed. A final approval from relevant ministries was expected to be granted by May 2008.
- In September 2007, officials announced that Kuwait’s Ministry of Planning is in discussions to hire an international consultant to set the TOR.
- In June 2006, a feasibility study contract was awarded to Ingenieria & Consultoria de Transporte (Ineco) of Spain. The study will include route alignment, traffic studies, revenue forecasting and financing options.