Wi-Fi enabled bus shelters for Dubai

16/08/2012 - Dubai Lifestyle News Posted by Neil King
Wi-Fi enabled bus shelters for Dubai

Just last week Dubai Ferry announced a major programme of investment in the city's commuter infrastructure. The planned introduction of a new route between the city's Port Rashid cruise terminal and Al Ghubaida station in Bur Dubai, which will be operational in October, will add to the already popular waterbus routes used by both commuters and holidaymakers.The move was backed by the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA), which tirelessly champions the improvement of Dubai's impressive public transport network.In this instance, the new route was being introduced to cope with increased demand and to make marine transport more accessible to the public. But new technology will be at the heart of the development, with boats on the route being connected to the city's Operation Command Centre. This is already being used to boost the punctuality of Dubai's buses.However, technology is also being used by the RTA to make passenger journeys more comfortable - not to mention more interesting too. As well as being the first place to introduce air-conditioned bus stops - to keep commuters cool in the midday heat - Dubai has managed to chalk up another first by championing bus stop Wi-Fi.Wi-Fi will be piloted by the RTA at some of the 400 air conditioned shelters dotted across the emirate. If successful, it could be rolled out across the city.Speaking to Gulf News about the development, Mohammad Abdullah Al Ali, director of planning and business development at the RTA's Public Transport Agency, said: "We are currently doing feasibility studies and working out the modalities of having Wi-Fi at new bus shelters."Several vendors have approached us with their ideas and we are looking at the best possible options."He reiterated the fact that the introduction of bus stop Wi-Fi was a world first, but also raised some potential concerns. Al Ali stated that the bus shelters could be crowded by non-commuters wanting internet access, so the Wi-Fi system could be tied to the current ticketing system that is in use.