Gulf Rock concludes a successful event at World Tunnel Congress 2018.
The GCC has one of the fastest-growing populations in the world. By 2020 this population is forecast to increase by one-third, to 53 million people. With such a population boom, the demand for better infrastructure, public transportation, roads and therefore tunnelling has increased dramatically in the last few years across the Gulf. Furthermore, the leaders of the GCC countries are actively promoting sustainability and as a consequence large scale tunnelling projects are being commissioned.
Early tunnel projects consisted mostly of underpasses, road tunnels and pedestrian tunnels. Dubai’s oldest tunnel is the Shindagha Tunnel under Dubai Creek, opened in 1975. Since 2008, the first major infrastructure projects were undertaken, including Sheikh Zayed highway tunnel, Abu Dhabi deep sewer tunnel (STEP) and Dubai Metro, the first urban rail network in the Arabian Peninsula, with its combined 13km of tunnel and several underground stations. Since then, a number of mega infrastructure projects are being introduced around the Gulf to improve public transportation, sewerage systems and storm water management.