Palm Monorel set for live testing


Dubai World company and one of the world’s largest and most innovative real estate developers, has announced that live testing of the Palm Monorail, which will transport thousands of visitors on Palm Jumeirah each day, will commence this October.

The Palm Monorail is the first monorail project to be constructed in the Middle East. Nakheel has laid 100 percent of the 5.45km track, while the monorail vehicles, which are engineered by leading railway system manufacturer Hitachi Ltd, famous for Japan’s high speed Bullet trains, are undergoing final inspection in Japan before arriving in Dubai for joint inspection with RTA and operators SMRTE.

Nakheel signed a technical agreement in December 2006, which will see the Osaka monorail team provide technical advice and training for staff during a six-month testing period. Construction work, which began in March 2006, was completed in July 2008. The system will ultimately connect to the Dubai Metro, following the introduction of RTA’s Al Sufouh tramline.

Robert Lee, Nakheel Managing Director, Investment Projects, said: “The Palm Monorail is not only the first system of its kind to be completed in the Middle East but is also setting global standards for the transportation industry. We have employed state-of-the-art technology to overcome a number of challenges whether that is running 1,000m of rail over-sea, meeting Dubai’s unique climatic conditions, or protecting the communities of Palm Jumeirah by utilising a virtually silent track system.” “The double track system has been completed on schedule and we will soon receive the monorail vehicles from Japan when we will begin a meticulous six-month testing period. In preparation for this process, a number of our staff travelled to Osaka to be trained, taking advantage of the close relationship between the governments of the twinned cities of Dubai and Osaka. With the full corporation of our strategic partner RTA, we expect to have the monorail operational and capable of carrying more than 40,000 passengers on Palm Jumeirah each day by April 2009.” “The RTA is working closely with the Office of British Rail for the Palm Monorail’s inspection, and eventually certification, process. Once the Palm Monorail system is connected with the Dubai Metro, tourists will be able to leave Dubai Airport on the metro and continue through to Palm Jumeirah, where they change over to the monorail system and move onwards to their hotel.” The Palm Monorail is being developed by a consortium of leading international companies led by the Marubeni Corporation.

The system is fully automatic and driverless, although an attendant will be on board at all times. The monorail will initially carry up to 2,400 passengers per hour per direction in four separate trains, each made up of three cars. At full capacity, the figure will rise to a maximum of 6,000 people in nine vehicles.

The 5.45km long transport system will run between the Gateway Station at the trunk of Palm Jumeirah and the Atlantis‘ Aquaventure Station on the crescent, calling at two intermediate stations on the way at Trump International Hotel and Tower, and the luxury retail centre Palm Mall.


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