• Commuters urged to use alternative modes of transport
First-Lieutenant Khaled Nasser al-Mulla, head of the Technical Committee of the Corniche Closure Committee at the Ministry of Interior, has stressed that a complete plan has been developed in preparation for the 2021 FIFA Arab Cup, which starts on November 30 with the participation of 16 teams, including the closure of Corniche Street from Friday until December 4.
Road users have been encouraged to use alternative modes of transport and routes in view of the closure. Only public transit services will be operated in the area, including Mowasalat (Karwa) buses and Doha Metro, during this period.
In a press statement to the media, First-Lieutenant al-Mulla said the plan has been developed for the closure with the full, concerted efforts of the Security Committee and the Corniche Closure Committee, which is subordinate to the committee for transportation plans and operations for the FIFA World Cup Qatar 2022, Qatar News Agency reports.
This includes engineering works by linking traffic lights to each other and providing roads with more than 110 signboards and some 49 electronic signs, in addition to carrying out seven construction works at separate intersections to improve traffic flow during the closure of the Corniche.
Eleven pedestrian crossings have been allocated for pedestrians' entrances and exits to the Corniche, and the seaside will be for pedestrians only, he added.
The official said two events will be held during the Corniche closure period - a 5-minute fireworks show at 8pm during the weekend, and the Qatar International Food Festival, which will be held from 3pm from Friday until December 4. He added that the food festival at Al Bidda Park will also begin on November 26 and continue until December 17. The Corniche will be reopened on December 5 with the festival continuing at Al Bidda Park.
He called on the public and road users to abide by the instructions.
Explaining the traffic plan, he said it includes security deployment at a number of places - such as intersections - to avoid any disruption of movement on roads, especially in the yellow box, and ensure the safety and security of the public and road users.
On how to access the Corniche, he referred to the underground solution - the Doha Metro with its 37 stations, 14 of which have the 'Park and Ride' facility. People can use this facility to park their car next to the station and use the Metro with ease to reach stations along the Corniche. Therefore, the Metro is the perfect solution during the closure period, he stressed.
Further, First-Lieutenant al-Mulla said shuttle buses will be provided for transportation from B-Ring and C-Ring roads starting from Souq Waqif towards Sheraton Doha.
The B-Ring Road service starts from Souq Waqif and has 15 pick-up and drop-off points, and its last station will be Al Bidda Park. The C-Ring Road service also begins at Souq Waqif and includes 19 pick-up and drop-off points.
Using the Metro will have many benefits, including following a healthy lifestyle, having easy access, and saving money and effort.
Regarding the expected congestion on roads during the closure period, the official said: "We have our plans and measures necessary to reduce congestion through the use of the 'Park and Ride' service, as well as linking signals to each other to facilitate movement."
Security personnel will be present at all intersections in addition to the presence of alternative roads. There are 52 destinations whose entry is from the Corniche, and now these can be accessed from the streets on the rear side of the Corniche. "These will have entrances and exits, and we have taken all necessary measures," he added.
First-Lieutenant al-Mulla called on fans during the FIFA Arab Cup and closure period to use the Metro, whose stations are available in different places to reach the Corniche and Al Bidda Park, and also advised drivers not to speed on roads.
He hoped that everyone would join hands, especially because the most important element is the road user, as using roads safely and correctly or using the Metro or public transportation will ease the burden on security personnel. "We are a conscious society, and the State of Qatar has a bright image to the outside world, and we hope the public adheres to the security and safety instructions to complete the distinctive, civilised image," he stressed.
Regarding the arrival of teams, he said: "We have determined for a while all the roads that each team will use during the tournament with names and dates so that the road lanes are not affected by the closure of the Corniche and the teams travel from the airport to hotels or from hotels to training stadiums or matches with ease."
The official made it clear at the end of his remarks that the closure of the Corniche Street will be from Al Sharq intersection to Sheraton Doha in the north and from Sheraton Doha to Port Intersection in the south. Traffic will be open for those coming from the centre of Doha towards Port Intersection and heading to Sharq Intersection.
All roads leading to Corniche Street will be closed, starting from Al Fanar Intersection, Al Jasra Intersection, Al Marmar Intersection, Al Diwan Intersection, Al Maha Intersection, Civil Defence Intersection and from Barzan Intersection.
With a large number of people expected to visit the area, special transportation services and pedestrian crossings have been arranged to serve the Corniche during the closure period.
Shuttle buses will be provided on different routes for transportation from today until December 4. The public can avail of the Corniche, B-Ring Road and C-Ring Road loop services to reach places such as Souq Waqif, Hotel Park (Sheraton), Al Bidda Park and several others.
The buses will be operating every 15 minutes.
The Corniche loop service will have 11 pick-up and drop-off points, while the B-Ring Road service will have 15 and the C-Ring Road service 19, according to information available on Sila, the platform that brings together Qatar’s transport modes into one network. Detailed maps are available on Sila’s Twitter page.
A large number of people are expected to use the Doha Metro to reach their destinations, and can also avail of the ‘Park and Ride’ facility available from some stations. The metrolink and metroexpress feeder bus services will also be available.
Overall, there are 37 Metro stations, of which seven serve the Doha Corniche area – DECC, West Bay QP, Corniche, Al Bidda, Msheireb, Souq Waqif and National Museum. Also, metrolink services are available at 21 stations and metroexpress at six stations, while the ‘Park and Ride’ facility can be found at 14 stations, according to information available on the Doha Metro & Lusail Tram Twitter page.
On its part, Mowasalat (Karwa) has modified its bus routes, timings and dates in view of the FIFA Arab Cup. The details can be viewed on the company’s Twitter page.
There has been co-ordination with all parties directly or indirectly affected by the Corniche closure, with detailed maps being sent to them by the authorities concerned showing alternative routes to reach their destinations.
Affected entities can also apply for an exceptional permit during the closure period, which will be granted subject to conditions.
Meanwhile, heavy vehicles and buses are banned from entering certain roads from November 26 until December 4 during peak hours – from 6am to 8.30am, from 12noon to 3pm, and from 5pm to 10pm.
The roads included on this list, according to the Ministry of Interior, are A-Ring Road, B-Ring Road, C-Ring Road, February 22 Street, Sabah Al Ahmad Corridor, Mohammed Bin Thani Street, Al Markhiya Street, and Al Istiqlal Street.
Public transport and school buses are exempted from this ban.
Heavy vehicles are also banned around stadiums at all times except from 1am to 5am.
Shuttle bus and Metro services
* Corniche loop bus service:
Northbound stops – Souq Waqif Metro station, Al Bidda Park, Post Office, Hotel Park (Sheraton), DECC Metro station, and City Center Doha.
Southbound stops – Hotel Park (Sheraton), Post Office, Al Bidda Park, Dhow Harbour, and Al Meena Street.
* B-Ring Road loop bus service:
Northbound stops – Souq Waqif Metro station, Dhow Harbour, Al Meena Street, Kaybar Street, Al Doha Al Jadeda Metro station, Rawdat Al Khail Street, Salwa Road, Doha Oasis, and Qatar Bowling Centre.
Southbound stops – Al Bidda Street, Doha Oasis, Salwa Road, Rawdat Al Khail Street, Al Doha Al Jadeda Metro station, and Al Raqqah Street.
* C-Ring Road loop bus service:
Northbound stops – Souq Waqif Metro station, Dhow Harbour, Al Meena Street, National Museum Metro station, Umm Ghuwailina Metro station, Al Hilal, Al Rawabi Street, Salwa Road, Al Sadd Metro station, Rumailah Hospital, and Qatar Bowling Centre.
Southbound stops – Al Bidda Street, Rumailah Hospital, Al Sadd Metro station, Salwa Road, Ali Bin Abi Talib Street, Al Hilal, Umm Ghuwailina Metro station, and National Museum Metro station.
* Doha Metro timings:
Doha Metro will operate between 2pm and midnight today; between 6am and 11pm from tomorrow until November 29; between 6am and 3am from November 30 until December 18 (except Fridays); and between 9am and 3am from November 30 until December 18 (Fridays).Last updated: November 26 2021 08:28 AM