Dubai set to add two new Salik gates in April

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(Getty Images - for illustrative purposes only)

(Getty Images - for illustrative purposes only)

Dubai's transport authority has announced that the third phase of its Salik toll gates system will go live from April 15.

The Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) said two new toll gates will be installed - the Al Mamzar Toll Gate at Al Mamzar Bridge on Al Ittihad Road and the Airport Tunnel Toll Gate.

The new gates will bring the total number of Salik points in the city to six.

Mattar Al Tayer, RTA chairman and executive director,  said: "The launch of Phase 3 of the Toll Gates System was made after conducting exhaustive traffic and field studies of the first and second phases, particularly after the lapse of more than one year since the operation of the Green Line of the Dubai Metro."

He said studies have proven that Salik has succeeded in slashing the trip time on the Sheikh Zayed Road by as much as 44 percent.

He added in a statement that Al Ittihad Road is considered one of the busiest roads in Dubai with about 260,000 vehicles using it every day.

Al Tayer said congestion levels on the road remained below international standards despite the RTA investing around AED1bn in flyovers and additional tunnels.

"The traffic studies concluded that the installation of a toll gate system on Al Ittihad Road without installing the system on the Airport Tunnel will result in massive traffic congestions in the Airport Tunnel," he said.

The Airport Tunnel is considered one of the key roads that serve the Dubai International Airport which will have the capacity to handle 110 million passengers per year by 2020.

Last month, passengers travelling in Dubai taxis started paying the AED4 (US$1.1) fee to pass through Salik toll gates.

Dubai’s RTA said the toll, which was originally applicable to taxis but scrapped in December 2008, will be introduced gradually as it rolls out new meter systems for taxis across the emirate.

Salik gates were launched in July 2007 under a plan to cut down congestion on Dubai’s roads.

The cash raised has since become a key source of income for the RTA, which expects revenues from the toll to reach AED5bn by 2013.

In 2011, the RTA said it had no plans to introduce new Salik toll gates to the city’s roads.

Media reports in February 2011 said the authority planned to add a further two gates in a bid to raise transport revenues.

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Posted by: care to care

come on guys, do you think your comments will have any positive impact ?

Posted by: Ashfaq

@ greydog, why should RTA penalize the large public who works hard to earn and save for our children's education and future? Is this a reasonable way to reduce the number of cars entering Dubai daily? What about the other Saliks located in odd places that play absolutely no role in reducing or regulating the traffic? Where is Dubai the City That Cares???

Posted by: Laith

I requested the respected authorities in Dubai to rethink these new Salik gates. Life is not easy and is very burdensome when you have children to educate. This will encourage people to remain in Sharjah during weekends and use carpooling during weekdays but these new Salik gates will never force people to relocate to Dubai simply because Sharjah and northern Emirates rent prices are considerably cheaper than rents in Dubai. A small example, a one-bedroom apartment in Sharjah can range from Dhs 20,000 to Dhs 30,000 while the average cost of a one-bedroom apartment in Dubai ranges from Dhs 30,000 to Dhs 60,000 per year which only means that rent for a one-bedroom flat in Dubai is about 60% higher than in Sharjah. Once again, please rethink these new Salik gates.

Posted by: greydog

Laith - I welcome your recognition that you have choices - car sharing, staying in Sharjah, using public transport etc. I don't think RTA has any desire to reolcate people to Dubai - they just want to reduce the number of cars coming into their city every day from elsewhere.

Expat - Your final comment is spot on! One of the biggest reasons why rents are cheaper in Sharjah is because the public infrastructure (inc roads and public transport services) is not very good, and the congestion on Dubai'soads is a consequence! On the other hand, if Sharjah Transport address these problems, rents will rise...

Posted by: Expat

If only the RTA would read AB for these comments and listen to any common man and his problems. RTA will never go back on their decisions as they have already announced it. Maybe they will turn it off at night atleast & weekends when the congestion does not exist to be SALIKed. Or atleast provide good alternate transport in co-ordination with Sharjah Transport with good connectivity between the 2 Emirates. I wonder what Sharjah Transport will do to help Sharjah residents to face this new situation?

Posted by: Hisham

Every time there is an increase in some fees people have to pay in Dubai (which are already minute even when totalled all up) people have the strangest comments. The country doesn't owe you anything and it should be obvious that no country in the world makes it it's sole mission to satisfy people coming in from other countries. The UAE does much more for the 89% non-UAE nationals than can be asked from any country. In fact, I think (and I am not a UAE national) some forms of tax would be very justifiable. For example, the huge sums of money leaking out of the economy through remittance to some countries should be heavily taxed (at at least 50%). That money would greatly benefit the local economy if it were to circulate, thus benefiting us all as fees do not have to be increased, but instead ends up greatly benefiting other economies.

Posted by: Sarfaraz

i think you've lost ur senses hisham. tax on remittance @50% would make 99% of the 89% expats leave the country for good, and then the RTA, DEWA etc can see how they can run thier city/country without the income earned from the hard working expats & without their manpower. It'll take only a few months to turn this entire city/country into a ghost country by levying any kind of taxes....
I'm an Indian expat civil engineer living here for not long & i still rue the day that i came to see this glittery part of the world....imposing any tax on me & I'll be a happy boomerang going back to my country......

Posted by: Sasha

Hisham, you do know, those countries where you DO pay taxes, you are eligible for both a tax return and you do happen to qualify to be a CITIZEN too !! you always are and will be an "outsider" in this part of the world (Gulf Region). So the only thing with which they attract people to come here and work is the whole notion of "we are a tax free nation" .

Posted by: amir

What if 90% of all traffic from Sharjah & Northern Emirates used Salik.... How it would help in congestion, except for the fact that RTA's income would skyrocket.

Either companies got to pay for this or employees. It could have major impact for people living in these areas.

What if Sharjah or Northern Emirates would put up similar plans to ease traffic jam.....

Posted by: greydog

- they would have to provide alternative transport systems first (as Dubai did with the metro).

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