Metro train en route from Ras Bu Fontas station to Al Wakra (Red Line), September 12, 2019
Map of phase 1 of Doha Metro
View of the construction site for Lusail station (Red Line), with the skyline of the West Bay district in Doha in the background, October 16, 2013
The elevated north section of the Red Line is assembled, August 11, 2016
The elevated north section of the Red Line is assembled, October 15, 2016
The elevated station Qatar University (Red Line) is assembled, July 25, 2016
DECC station on the Red Line, May 13, 2019

Doha Metro, Qatar

Qatar launched its long-term development plan, Qatar National Vision 2030, in October 2008. Running until 2030, the vision aims to promote the state’s human and environmental development through various initiatives.

The Qatar Integrated Railway Project (QIRP), developed under the leadership of DB Engineering & Consulting, will play a key role in this. The largest QIRP subproject, the metro in Qatar’s capital Doha, is a new, state-of-the-art mass transit system running largely underground. It is intended to make local public rail an attractive transportation option and to relieve the sprawling car traffic in Doha and the surrounding suburbs.

Doha Metro

In May 2019, the 40 km Red Line was put into operation, initially serving 13 of the total 18 stations. Trains ran between Al Wakra in the south and Al Qassar station to the north of the city center. Today, the line has been extended to the Lusail terminus in northern Doha. In November and December 2019, the 22 km Green Line, running from Al Mansoura in the city center to Al Riffa in the west, and the 14km Gold Line between Ras Bu Aboud and Al Aziziyah were opened.

Tunnel built listed in Guinness Book of Records

The first construction phase was realized at a rapid pace, with only seven years from the beginning of construction to the start of services.

From August 2014 to September 2016, 2.5 km of metro tunnels were completed per week beneath the streets of Doha. This record-breaking speed was only possible thanks to a well-rehearsed team. At peak times, 21 tunnel boring machines specially manufactured for this project by the German company Herrenknecht were in use simultaneously. They assembled 490,497 concrete segments to form 70,071 tunnel rings. This achievement has rightly found a place in the Guinness Book of Records.

Big challenges with a successful outcome

The main challenges of the first phase of the Doha Metro project were the region’s geology – with the city built largely on limestone – and the need to perform construction work in densely populated urban areas, such as the impressive Corniche promenade, the high-rise districts of Doha City and the tourist centers with their numerous hotel complexes. A special alignment technology was used during tunneling to prevent subsidence of the buildings above. The materials used also had to be designed for the special climatic conditions. They can withstand temperature fluctuations of up to 40°C. Optimal temperature conditions inside the tunnel were ensured by a powerful tunnel air conditioning and ventilation system.

Despite the many challenges, the project was completed to the full satisfaction of the client. DB Engineering & Consulting supported the project management as well as the coordination of an international team and ensured a high standard. This meant that all work could be provided to a high quality, within budget, and on time. With this project, the company has helped to create a modern and sustainable mass transit infrastructure in Qatar.

In Lusail, a new city north of Doha built since the year 2000, the metro network is supplemented by the Lusail Tram, another QIRP subproject. This has four lines with 25 above-ground and underground stops and is connected to the metro network via two interchange stations: Lusail and Legtaifiya on the Red Line. Here, DB Engineering & Consulting supported the client in the architectural design and planning of all stations, including intermodality and landscaping.

H.E. Dr. Abdulla Bin Abdulaziz Turki Al Subaie, MD & CEO Qatar Rail, and Niko Warbanoff, CEO DB Engineering & Consulting, look back on a successful cooperation in the Doha Metro project:

Scope of services:

  • Technical support and personnel to help establish the rail company Qatar Rail – organization, management, regulations
  • Project management tasks and project/construction management, internal and external interface management during design and execution
  • Quality control and assurance, review of technical management plans, system security and quality assurance
  • Development of tender design and planning of calls for tenders for all four metro lines
  • Creation of operations concept for Doha Metro and testing using simulations
  • Reference design for all rail systems; technical assistance in all aspects of specialist foundation engineering, tunnel building, bridge building, track superstructure and civil engineering
  • Track systems and electromechanical engineering – conceptual design, feasibility study and preliminary design, preparation of tender documents
  • Support in optimizing the design, construction time and construction costs of track systems, consideration of reliability, availability and maintainability
  • Monitoring and inspection of the installation of the power supply system
  • Safety management on construction sites
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