UAE’s national railway operator; Union Railways announced that the construction work of 270km railway network that will link Shah with Habshan is planned to commence in mid-2011.

The railway company will tender civil engineering works in March. It is the first phase of Shah-Habshan-Ruwais rail network.

The scope of work of this initial phase, also known as stage zero, includes earthworks, laying down the track, building the railway bridges, installing the communications and signalling systems, as well as the construction of the depot and project offices at Mirfa. The next two phases of the project will see the establishment of a network in Abu Dhabi and Dubai in the stage one, and a network in the Northern Emirates in stage two.

Union Railways has appointed ATKINS as the Preliminary Engineering Services Consultant to oversee the execution of the three stages of the UAE’s railway network, with the reselection of the Project Management Consultant soon to follow.

When complete, the railway will serve the whole country via a 1200km-long safe and cost-efficient rail network.