Work on the inter-emirate rail project is bang on track…

Etihad Rail, the team that’s building a huge 1,200km nation-long train line that will eventually link all seven emirates with Saudi Arabia, has shared a video showing the track laying progress between Dubai and Abu Dhabi.

And there’s actually something quite therapeutic about seeing those sleepers rhythmically stamped into the ground.

Once completed, a passenger and freight transport track will stretch from the Eastern seaboard of Fujairah, right up to the very edge of Saudi Arabia. With plans to take it beyond, and into other Gulf States already in the pipeline.

Big wins for the environment

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One of the most exciting aspects of this project is what it means to the environment.

There’s a section of the track between shah andHabshan,  and the port of Ruwais in the Al Dhafra Region of Abu Dhabi, that’s already in use for the transport of sulphur. Glamorous? Not really. Perfumed by the aroma of expired egg cress sandwiches? Almost certainly. But ferrying this vital industrial resoucre by rail rather than road has already saved two million truck trips, which equates to a net reduction in carbon emissions of around 70 to 80 per cent.

Etihad Rail has key partnerships with the Department of Culture and Tourism — Abu Dhabi (DCT Abu Dhabi) and the Environment Agency – Abu Dhabi (EAD) to help ensure minimal wildlife and heritage disruption occurs from the track’s construction.

Etihad Rail avoids crossing breedings sites; it uses noise control tech to limit sound levels, and has committed to only using the horn in emergencies; there’s a vegetation replanting scheme; the track is lined with special fencing and has made provision for 10 camel underpasses, 22 gazelle underpasses and 78 reptile underpasses so far; the locomotives also conform to Tier 3 (EPA) engine emission levels, which is a good thing for everyone.

Images: Etihad Rail