Dubai to Open $3 Billion Rail Line as City Gets Back to Business

Dubai plans to open a $3 billion extension to its metro rail network in September as the emirate pushes ahead with projects even after a key event to attract millions of visitors was delayed by a year.

“Route 2020 opens to the public this September and will serve 270,000 people,” Dubai’s media office said after its formal inauguration by the emirate’s ruler Sheikh Mohammed bin Rashid Al Maktoum.

Dubai’s World Expo 2020 was delayed due to the coronavirus pandemic. The government and the private sector had spent billions of dollars building hotels and facilities in expectation of visitors from around the world to the Middle East business hub.

The emirate, which started easing restrictions in the past months after locking down the city to prevent the spread of coronavirus, allowed holiday-makers to resume flying into Dubai from Tuesday. There will be an “aggressive” bounce back in tourism by the year end, Helal Al Marri, director general of Dubai’s Department of Tourism and Commerce Marketing, told Bloomberg TV on Wednesday.

Dubai, which is facing a prolonged slump in real-estate market, also expects the metro extension to boost property prices along its way. “Economically, the project will appreciate the rental and sales values of residential and commercial properties within 250 to 500 meters of metro stations by 20-30%,” according to the media office statement.

©2020 Bloomberg L.P.

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