The $35bn integrated rail system will be one of the most modern railway networks in the world with four lines, connecting 98 stations, with an overall length of over 651km.
Project Statistics: -
$35bn: Cost of the Qatar Rail Project
651km: The span of the freight and passenger rail network
4 Lines: Red, Gold, Green & Blue Lines
80 Stations: Total number of planned stations on the 4 lines
220km p/h: Maximum speed per hour the passenger train can reach
20,000+: Employees are expected to be working during the peak of construction
11 million tonnes: Cargo capacity (maximum) to be transported eachyear
1.2 million tonnes:Steel to be used on the project
8 million: Cubic metre of concrete
80 million: Cubic metres of soil to be removed for tunnelling
Source: Edmund O’Sullivan, Chairman, MEED Events – Qatar Projects Conference 2012
At the recent MEED Qatar Projects 2012 conference Qatar Deputy Chief Executive Officer Geoff Mee – stated that the QRC has revised its original procurement strategy to help accelerate the delivery of the first of the Doha Metro.
“There are two reasons why we have revised our approach to bidding for phase one of the Doha Metro. We now have to plan for winning the Olympics in 2020. If we wait, we will be late to build the metro for it. And we have also done extensive research with the industry and asked them how big the packages could get. They have got bigger as a result. That has enabled us to review the way we are letting the contracts. Today, we launched the very first set of contracts for request for proposals (RFPs) for enabling works. This involves the removal of utilities and setting up the worksites. The RFP is due to be returned in one month. The people selected to bid for these contracts are those that have been shortlisted for the major works contracts that will be put out to tender later this year.
The consortia that have expressed interest in the Doha Metro are some of the strongest I have ever seen. The first major contracts in the Doha Metro will be for four tunnelling packages worth in the order of $2 billion-3 billion each. Then there will be two packages for major station works at Msheireb and Education City. They will be a lesser value but still enormous. We are having to push this ahead very, very quickly. Next week, those of you in cement and logistics industries will be receiving an invitation to a conference on 15 February about how much concrete and concrete segments we need, the logistics challenges, how that logistics challenge is being addressed and we shall explain what is going into the tunnels. In addition to that, we have commissioned consultants to look at other business opportunities that will be a spin-off from this. This is about setting up businesses to serve the new industry.
In the next month, those people on the shortlist for the first major contracts in Phase 1 of the Doha Metro will be invited to make a presentation so we can get clarity about what is required. We have got to reduce the number on that shortlist from about 30 to half that number. If you are on the shortlist, you will need to have your best teams. I want to see the teams that will be delivering the work. I want to see the people that are doing the work and you will be marked down if I don’t see them. Qatar is paying world class money for world class teams.
The RFPs for tunnelling will be issued in the first week of April. The major station box contracts will be issued as RFPs in April. We shall then be working hard on the elevated sections, then station fit-out and the rolling stock. So in very brief terms, that is what Qatar Railways Company is now doing. The starting gun has gone off.”
The packages are being split up into large but bite-size pieces, and there are some real optimistic vibes around the place. That should come as no surprise though, especially when you consider that Qatar Rail has managed to attract the best construction teams in the world, has a commitment for funding, and is receiving phenomenal help in terms of identifying the parcels of land that it needs to secure to make the whole project happen.
Having studied the whole network and decided what the first milestone should be, Qatar Rail has worked out in great detail what is needed to meet the requirements to achieve that, and that is what it is now clearly focused on: that’s all it is going to commit to build at this stage.
Phase 1A of the Doha Metro will be ready by 2019, in time for the Olympics if Qatar is successful in its bid. Phase 1B of the project will be completed in time for the 2022 World Cup. Qatar has promoted a flexible regulatory system for business ventures, and continues to maintain the Middle East’s highest degree of transparency. It has opened itself up to foreign investors with an enthusiasm rarely seen in the Gulf, and this is going a long way to ensure that the World Cup – and maybe even the Olympics – will be the success that everyone dreams of.