DMA To unify road construction standards across Abu Dhabi Emirate

Published November 11th, 2009 - 06:51 GMT

Undersecretary led eleven day scoping tour to USA by to enhance knowledge of best practices and standards

Abu Dhabi, November 1, 2009: As part of its effort to provide better quality of living and world’s best practice in ‘governance’ across the emirate, the Department of Municipal Affairs (DMA) will launch the first phase of the unified roads, bridges and tunnels construction standards manual in mid 2010 to ensure consistency across Abu Dhabi. Essential to enable the creation of the new standards manual is the development of a comprehensive ’terms of reference’. To achieve this, H.E. Ahmed Shareef, Undersecretary at the Department of Municipal Affairs (DMA) led a nine person delegation to the United States of America on a tour with the International Road Federation.

“The delegation team had the opportunity to learn technical and engineering aspects of road projects and infrastructure. We were able to identify the organisational and administrative procedures between the involved entities. The trip allowed us to open direct channels of communication and establish partnerships with both private and public sector organsiations related with the project,” says H.E. Ahmed Shareef, Undersecretary of the DMA.

The delegate team is part of the Committee for the Unification of the Standards for Roads, Bridges and Tunnels that will work with the International Road Federation and other best practice organisations to develop a unified manual that suits the specific geographic, climatic and other needs of Abu Dhabi.

Commenting on the upcoming unified road standards manual, H.E. Ahmed Shareef, adds “DMA is working on implementing best practice models in all areas of its work, including its work with other agencies. Developing the right standards for road construction is a priority not only for us and the Municipalities but also for, the Department of Transport, the Urban Planning Council and the Abu Dhabi Police.  We are all working together to implement the new standards manual across the emirate.

“Unifying the road construction standards will bring consistent roads, bridges and tunnels to Abu Dhabi.”

The new standards will be launched in two phases with the first as an interim phase starting in mid 2010 and the final phase to be completed in two years. The interim standard will be applicable to new additions to existing road structures and the construction of new roads, bridges and tunnels.

“The phased approach will allow quick adherence to interim single internationally accepted best practice standards while the Abu Dhabi specific standards which respond to our particular geographic and climatic conditions are being prepared over the next two years. The community will benefit from better, safer roads across the emirate, bringing us closer to achieving our vision and the emirate’s 2030 vision at large,” says HE Shareef.

The agenda of the USA tour included a series of meetings and workshops where the Abu Dhabi delegation team will met with government and private sector organisations in the USA that are responsible for design, development and maintenance of roads, bridges, tunnels and their associated hard and soft infrastructure (e.g. smart technology for managing and synchronising traffic lights).

“The delegation trip brought together government partners that are responsible for road infrastructure in the emirate. We went to Phoenix, Arizona to study the standards that apply in a desert area, then to New York, for a more in-depth understanding of the impact on road construction for an island and finally to Washington D.C. to meet with the country heads of relevant government and private sector organisations,” concludes HE Shareef.

Accompanying the under secretary on the tour were:
1. H.E. Dr. Matar Mohammed Saif Al Nuaimi, Executive Director, Assets & Infrastructure, Al Ain Municipality
2. H.E. Dr. Omar Abdul Aziz Mubarak Abdullatif Al Mubarak, Executive Director Infrastructure, Western Region Municipality
3. H.E. Eng. Abdulla Saeed Sultan Abdulla Al Shamsi, Executive Director, Assets & Infrastructure, Abu Dhabi Municipality
4. Engineer Ibrahim Al Hamoud, Planner, Transport Planning, Abu Dhabi Urban Planning Council
5. H.E. Jasem Mohammed Al Darmaki, Executive Director, Property Management, Department of Municipal Affairs

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