A significant phase in the overhaul of one of the major arterial thoroughfares in Bahrain’s capital is set to go live. The Al Fateh Highway underpass, part of a multi-million dinar development project, is scheduled to partially open for traffic tomorrow. This comes as part of the country’s efforts to streamline city traffic and enhance road safety measures.

Progressing at Pace

Engineers working on the project have reported that the works are progressing at a rapid pace. The authorities have urged drivers to observe and obey all traffic rules to ensure the safety of all road users. The Al Fateh Highway underpass is an integral part of a busy intersection at the Al Fateh Grand Mosque junction with Awal Avenue and Bani Otbah Avenue.

Details of the opening were announced by the Works Ministry in co-ordination with the General Directorate of Traffic. In the tunnel, two lanes will be opened for southbound traffic travelling towards Mina Salman and one lane will be opened for northbound traffic towards Bahrain Bay. Two additional lanes will also be opened for northbound traffic through a traffic lights system set above the tunnel.

Impact of the Project

The infrastructure project, which started in April 2021, is expected to be completed by March. The finished project promises to expand the Al Fateh Highway into a flowing four lanes in each direction. Additionally, a three-lane each-way tunnel and a ground intersection controlled by traffic lights will be added. Post completion, the highway will have a capacity to accommodate 140,000 vehicles per day, up by 61% from the current 87,000 figure.

The project, awarded to Nass Contracting and Huta Hegerfeld Consortium, is financed by the Saudi Fund for Development. The project is executed under the supervision of the Parsons engineering consultancy firm. As of now, 56% of the project has been completed, with the construction of the main tunnel also progressing steadily.

Implications for the Future

Works Minister Ibrahim Al Hawaj stated that the primary aim of the project was to increase the capacity of the Al Fateh Highway by 61% to 140,000 vehicles per day, up from the current 87,000. The improvements to the highway form part of a broader scheme to enhance Bahrain’s infrastructure and meet the needs of its rapidly growing population.

While the construction work has caused some temporary traffic disruptions, the expected benefits of the project, including improved traffic flow and reduced congestion, are predicted to far outweigh the short-term inconveniences. This project stands as a testament to Bahrain’s commitment to infrastructural development and progress.

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