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    Sunday, June 3, 2007

    Road closed till October next year

    USEful info for regular users of Al Ittihad road from today's Gulf News:

    Published: 04/06/2007 12:00 AM (UAE)

    Road closed till October next year

    By Daniel Bardsley, Staff Reporter

    Dubai: Motorists have predicted they will face extra headaches from the end of this month when further diversions are introduced on Al Ittihad road, which links Sharjah and Dubai.

    Two weeks ago the stretch of the road between Al Mulla Plaza and the Al Qiyadah Interchange was closed off in the Dubai to Sharjah direction.

    Afterwards, many drivers were stuck in congestion for several hours and some were left unsure as to which roads to take.

    One big crawl

    A similar situation is likely to affect those going from Sharjah to Dubai from the end of this month when diversions in that direction are introduced.

    Motorists say the changes - which will allow for the expansion of the road - will further increase delays, especially at peak times. "For those who come from Sharjah to Dubai in the morning, it will be one big crawl. It will mean more delays," said an Indian who resides in Sharjah and commutes to Dubai along Al Ittihad Road.

    "It is always bad between about 6 and 11 in the morning and it will be worse because of this."

    However, he added that at least schools would be closed by the time the diversion was introduced, so the full effect on people who have to drop off their children would not be felt for a few months. "It is a blessing that the work is starting when the schools will be closed," he said.

    Another Sharjah-to-Dubai commuter said: "I always avoid peak times on Al Ittihad road - it's very bad then. It will mean more delays and more time on the road." The details of the Sharjah to Dubai diversions were revealed by Dubai's Roads and Transport Authority yesterday.

    The diversions are scheduled to remain in place until work to expand the road as part of the Expressway project is completed, scheduled to be in October 2008. The size of the road is being increased to cope with heavy growth in the amount of traffic.

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