The first tram to be used on Dubai's Al Sufouh tram project is slated to arrive in the emirate in December, the Roads and Transport Authority said on Saturday.
Dubai's transport authority said the first vehicle will be delivered on December 11 after undergoing technical tests at the facilities of the manufacturing company.
The RTA added in a statement that production of the Al Sufouh tram's vehicles at the factory in France had almost hit 30 percent.
Mattar Al Tayer, chairman and executive director of the RTA, made the announcement during an inspection tour of the project site.
Al Tayer inspected the work progress in various parts of the project, particularly the elevated track, stations, and utility lines diversion points.
The initial phase is pencilled for completion in the last quarter of 2014 while the overall project completion rate has touched 52 percent, the statement added.
Eight trams will operate in the initial phase and are expected to lift about 3,500 passengers per hour per direction.
Each tram measures 44 metres in length and has a capacity to carry about 300 passengers. They will have a First Class (Gold Suite) section and one cabin designated for women and children.
The project, which is being constructed by Alstom-Besix Consortium, was originally scheduled to be completed in 2011, but has been plagued by cash concerns in the wake of the global financial crisis and the first phase is now set for completion in 2014.
Designed to stretch 14km along Al Sufouh Road, the tram is set to be the world’s first to run with ground power feeding the entire line, eliminating the need for overhead wires.
The first phase of the project will span 10.6km and cost AED4bn, and will see 11 of the network’s 17 stations open to the public.
On completion, the tram will link with the Dubai Metro at three stations along Sheikh Zayed Road and will also tie-up with the monorail on the Palm Jumeirah.
In February 2012, Dubai Government said it had secured a $675m financing deal for the first phase of the Al Sufouh Tram project.