To help ease the flow of traffic onto and from the Pearl-Qatar, a new intersection with smart traffic lights will open outside the island on Friday, the nation’s public works authority has said.
The signaled junction will replace a roundabout that opened at the beginning of the year, which temporarily managed traffic as work to create the new QR3.5 billion Lusail Expressway continues.
The new intersection will have sensor-controlled traffic lights that adjust the timing of the signals according to traffic flow, Ashghal said.
The existing roundabout at the corner of Lagoona Mall and the Grand Hyatt Hotel is being demolished and another one has been built further west, which will allow access to the shopping center and Zig-Zag towers.
However, the new road configuration means that motorists will no longer be able to turn left to go toward the Pearl upon exiting Lagoona. Instead, they will have to drive down to the Diplomatic Club roundabout and do a u-turn.
Ashghal said the work should also improve safety on the road, which gets particularly busy during the weekends, as commuters head to the Pearl, Lagoona Mall and nearby hotels.
There is only one entrance and exit to the Pearl, which can contribute to long traffic lines down the main road – something residents have previously voiced their concerns about given the safety implications.
Construction of the Lusail Expressway is expected to be completed in mid-2017.
The 5.3km route along Al Istiqlal Road will connect Dafna/West Bay with Lusail City.
It will include four highway lanes with additional filter lanes, three large interchanges and connections with the Pearl-Qatar and Katara.
“Extensive artscape” along the length of the road will be a key feature.
In March this year, Malaysia-based contractor Eversendai announced it had won a QR263 million contract for the construction of the Al Wahda Arches and visitors’ center.
This will include two arches, with a visitors’ center suspended 40 meters above the road that can be accessed by cable car.