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Traffic Problem in Abu Dhabi during Rush Hours

Brief description of the problem

Abu Dhabi has been experiencing massive economic expansion, which as a result has resulted in a corresponding pressure on the country’s infrastructure. Even though Abu Dhabi is considered to one of the world’s modern cities, it faces a serious problem of traffic congestion, especially during rush hours. Almost every day, the majority of residents get stuck in the traffic for hours. Clearly, this is a multifaceted problem with scores of serious effects and causes. The main reason why most people in Abu Dhabi are suffering from traffic jams is because of rapid population growth of which has led to increased number of cars. Besides that, the number of younger drivers and female drivers today is high as compared to the previous years. Traffic congestion has been exacerbated by the increasing number of commercial vehicles and trucks since they move very slowly and from time to time they stop to unload goods; thus, jamming the traffic. As it will be evidenced in this piece, traffic congestion brings about numerous issues; for instance, it makes it difficult for people to park their cars and can lead to reduced workers’ productivity. The number of accidents in Abu Dhabi has increased because people are becoming more angry or frustrated because of the unending traffic jams. Traffic congestion has increased car emissions; thus, leading to high level of pollution in the city and making it less attractive to invest or live. Because of traffic congestion, a number of Shops have relocated outside the city or into malls, where there is available parking. Therefore, there is a need for a compressive and innovative solution that will help solve this problem considering that effects attributed to traffic congestion are damaging to Abu Dhabi and the city’s residents.

The 6-Stage Thinking Framework

Observing the Problem

Abu Dhabi is experiencing the contemporary problem of traffic congestion. During the rush hour, all the city’s streets are packed with trucks, taxis, and cars.raffic congestion has become a challenging problem felt by nearly all residents across Abu Dhabi. Despite being a modern city, . Presently, t (Department of Transport 21)traffic congestion. Most of the cities across the globe have recognized the essence of an improved transport system in maintaining competitiveness and promoting economic growth. In order to achieve competitiveness, attract investments, and foster economic growth, Abu Dhabi should ease the movement the movement of goods and people across the citywaste a significant portion of their time in the of the surface transport in the Abu Dhabi is by contract bus, taxi or private car as well as an emerging public bus system. Many of people living in Abu Dhabi Department of Transport (21), most According to

Defining the Problem

massive economic expansion, its roads cannot absorb the high number of new vehicles being purchased yearly. Traffic congestion has led to corrosive health and social effects due to the reduce level of performance and production. UAEinteract, although Abu Dhabi is experiencingThe problem of traffic congestion in Abu Dhabi has also led to reduced efficiency and productivity since students and workers get to school or workplace late. Travelers together with salespersons are experiencing losses because they waste a lot of time in traffic jams. In Abu Dhabi, the existing roads’ capacity have been outgrown; this, compounding the traffic congestion problem. As mentioned by tension amongst the shoppers and commuters. Traffic congestion also results in increased rates of accidents and adverse environmental effect. As vehicle emissions increase, the air quality declines.highly developed they cannot meet the needs of the population, which is increasing rapidly. Traffic congestion has led to frustration and anger; sitting in traffic for hours normally lead to stress and . The main cause of traffic congestion in Abu Dhabi is the increased number of cars due to the rapid growth of the country’s economy, increasing population, and affordability of cars. Besides that, Abu Dhabi does not have public transport infrastructure; as a result, the residents are forced to depend on taxis or cars. The congestion is also caused by the road system, which aside from beingA number of factors, such as poor infrastructure for public transport and increased number of taxis define the traffic congestion in Abu Dhabi during rush hours

Generating Solutions

el way of handling the problem, the number of vehicles added to the already overcrowded roads is very high. Therefore, capping would help reduce the number of vehicles purchased annually to a level that is more manageable. Other solutions include congestion pricing and rewarding users of public transport.Although it looks like a cruA number of solutions can solve the traffic congestion problem; for instance, Abu Dhabi should allow private companies to provide public transport services in particular times and routes to reduce the pressure on taxis. More importantly, the city’s public transport system should be overhauled completely in order to facilitate the residents of Abu Dhabi to use it. While improving the public transport system, the Abu Dhabi authorities should ensure that the revamped system would provide timely services, it is safe, and reduces the number of private vehicles in the roads. Improving the public transport system would undoubtedly reduce traffic fatalities as well as air pollution. Another possible solution is amending the working timings to ensure there is no shortage of taxis; that is to say, public and private sectors personnel together with students start and finish their work at varying times. Government functions can be relocated in the outskirts of Abu Dhabi in order to reduce pressure in the city centre; thus, reducing traffic congestion. Instituting E-traffic system is another viable solution for this problem. Given that the traffic congestion issue is a major problem that has affected Abu Dhabi for many years, the government should cap the number of private vehicles added annually.

Creative Idea Evaluation

Abu Dhabi can introduce incentives for people using the public transport system to increase the number of people using the system. This can be achieved by improving the infrastructure and connectivity across the city. Incentives could include
Tax reduction schemes for employees in the public sector using public transport on regularly. Still, congestion pricing is the most creative idea that could be effective in Abu Dhabi. The city could utilize congestion monitoring systems and devices to reduce traffic, especially during the rush hours. Economists as cited by Wachs (4), have continually maintained that traffic congetsion problem can be solved completely through congetsion pricing. Congestion can be eliminated in Abu Dhabi if the price of travelling is raised to an adequately high level that could clear the traffic jam.

Judging the Best Solution

Traffic congestion has led to longer commuting duration and increased levels of pollution. Congestion pricing is an innovative tool that could be used by Abu Dhabi to reduce the traffic congestion menace and make the city more attractive to investors and tourists. In this method, both trucks and cars are charged higher tolls whenever they access the city during the rush hours. This technique has been successful in a number of cities such as London, Singapore, and Stockholm (Scientific American). This technique was first utilized in 1975 in Singapore, whereby drivers were charged $3 to enter the central business district. The entire Singapore utilizes this technique, and the money collected is used to improve and expand public transport system and reduce traffic congestion. Congestion pricing has enabled Singapore city to reduce congestion by 45 per cent and increased the use of public transport system by 20 percent (Scientific American). Both London and Stockholm are using this technique, and have successfully reduced congestion. Therefore, Abu Dhabi can successfully reduce congestion by using the congestion pricing.

Implementing the Solution

To implement the ‘congestion pricing’ solution, Abu Dhabi leaders, and concerned authorities should include stakeholders in order to successfully ‘sell’ the solution to the public. To reduced resistance, feedback channels should be created. A vision for the implementation of the solution should be created. The vision could include numerous goals that should be realized, an outline of things that should be completed, or systematic.


Considering that ‘congestion pricing’ would likely attract opposition from drivers, the UAE government should implement laws that would help protect this idea. The UAE government should enact Urban Mobility Law, which will authorize Municipality of Abu Dhabi to put into practice the congestion pricing in order to reduce traffic congestion across the city. This law would encourage the residents to utilize the public transportation system as well as lessen air pollution.

Value Proposition

The demand by road users for reliability and accessibility should drive Abu Dhabi transport agencies to implement the congestion pricing.
Clearly, the best value proposition for the Abu Dhabi road users is not spending hours in traffic jams while moving from home to work and vice versa. In this case, congestion pricing is the best value proposition for Abu Dhabi since it will enable people to spend less time in roads, result in reduced car emissions, and improves productivity and efficiency of students and workers. For the government, the best value proposition will be that when people spend less time on the roads, they will consume lesser fuel. Therefore, this would help cut the utilization of crude oil leading to an improved economy. With less traffic, noise pollution would be reduced in Abu Dhabi and this would be a win-win situation for every person.

After involving the stakeholders, a team should be created to facilitate the implementation of the solution. The team should clearly understand the problem and steps involved in the implementation of the solution. A team leader should be selected, someone capable of encouraging and motivating other team members. The last step is about schedule meeting to assess the progress of solution implementation. The selected team can choose the suitable type of congestion pricing to use Variable Tolls on all new and existing roads, tunnels, and bridges in Abu Dhabi, whereby the users pay to access them. The toll in this type of congestion pricing is variable; the prices could be high or low based on the estimated level of traffic during the day or measured traffic level. Zone-Based charges are another type of congestion pricing that could be implemented in Abu Dhabi. In Zone-Based tolls, drivers are charged for using designated road system within the city areas that are heavily congested.

Sources of Finance

To facilitate the implementation processes, funding can be sources from taxes, revenues collected or through pub­lic-private partnerships, whereby the capital needed to implement the solution is offered by the private sector. The finance can also be sourced from the UAE government reserves or proceeds from the idea itself. Road infrastructure financing can also be used to finance this idea.

Stakeholders Analysis

An important step in the process of implementing the solution is making sure that all stakeholders understand the benefits associated with the solution. The stakeholders include Police, workers, commuters, students, local residents, taxi owners, department of transport, and business organizations. In this case, the solution should be reviewed carefully and all challenging elements in the solution should be highlighted. The traffic-congestion problem in one way or another influences the above-mentioned groups; therefore, they should be allowed to make their contribution regarding the proposed solution. Analyzing carefully the suggested solution together with the stakeholders could help generate a response strategy that is more effective.

Works Cited

Department of Transport. Surface Transport Master Plan A Vision for Connecting Abu Dhabi. Strategic Plan. Department of Transport. Abu Dhabi: Department of Transport, 2009.

Scientific American. Ecofriendly Tolls?: Congestion Pricing Promotes Mass Transit. 2009. 23 November 2016.

UAEinteract. DPE Weekly Report: Traffic congestion in Abu Dhabi city. 22 June 2008. 23 November 2016.

Wachs, Martin. «Fighting Traffic Congestion with Information Technology.» Issues in Science and Technology 19.1 (2002): 1-10. <>.