— Mazen Abd Rabbo (@MAbdRabbo) December 25, 2013
The decrease in noise pollution follows a directive from the island’s new acting CEO, a spokesman told Doha News, and comes just as residents have launched an online petition to protest the noise.
Last month, Badr Al-Meer returned to serve as acting CEO of United Development Company, which manages the island.
Al-Meer, who had been at Qatar Airways for six months after spending eight years as UDC’s vice president of engineering and construction, replaced Ebrahim Al-Sulaiti, whose duties as CEO “ended” last month, UDC said in a statement.
According to the spokesman, the Pearl’s security is now banning motorbikes that don’t belong to residents from entering the island at all hours of the day.
“The new procedure has been taken during the last five days,” he said, adding that residents are also required to respect the rules, and not make excessive noise with their vehicles at night.
The policy is stricter than the previous rule UDC instituted earlier this year, when it installed signs banning motorbikes from entering the area between 10pm and 10am. At that time, the Pearl said it was the police’s responsibility to enforce the rule, which only quieted engine revving noises for a few days.
But now, the island’s health and safety department is handling the problem, stopping people at the main gate if necessary, the spokesman said.
Speaking to Doha News, Hasan, a Qatar resident who has lived on the Pearl for three years, said he hopes the new policy will stick, after attempts to quell the noise in May did not:
“It has definitely quieted down and I hope it stays this way, but we’ve been down this road before with the bike ban – that lasted a week.”
Last month, the Pearl also said it was introducing an “action plan” to try to improve the situation, including installing speed cameras on the main road and speed bumps on Porto Arabia Drive, as well as working with police on traffic-related issues.