Qatar inks deal for Doha Metro driverless trains

Consortium signs agreement to build and deliver fully automated system including 75 sets of three-car trains.
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A consortium of five companies has signed an agreement to build and deliver a full-automated driverless metro system in Doha.

The group consisting of Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, Mitsubishi Corporation, Hitachi, The Kinki Sharyo Co and Thales said it has received a letter of conditional acceptance from the Qatar Railways Company for the systems package for the metro project which is slated for completion in October 2019.

The package calls for turnkey construction of a fully automated driverless metro system. Included are 75 sets of three-car trains, platform screen doors, tracks, a railway yard, and systems for signaling, power distribution, telecommunications and tunnel ventilation.

The package is also expected to include maximum 20-year maintenance services for the metro system after its completion.

Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, the leader of the consortium, said in a statement that it will supply the power distribution system, platform screen doors, tracks and tunnel ventilation work, and will also undertake overall project management and system integration.

Mitsubishi Corporation and Kinki Sharyo will jointly provide the railway cars while Thales will supply the advanced communications based train control (CBTC) signaling, telecommunications & security, integrated operational control centre and automatic fare collection systems.

Hitachi will perform some project management duties and also handle facilities maintenance, including the supply of special maintenance vehicles that comprehensively inspect the safety of infrastructure such as railway tracks and electric train lines.

Qatar Rail's CEO Saad Ahmed Al Muhannadi said: "In 2013 and 2014, we signed many agreements that reached a remarkable value promising to deliver the best standards of metro railway in the near future. Today, with the five member Japan consortium led by Mitsubishi Heavy Industries, we look forward to add more value to our project knowing the international expertise of the Japanese fellows and provide Doha with a fully secure and automated driverless metro system."

The Doha Metro will run through the city of Doha and will consist of four lines in two phases – Red, Green, Gold and Blue – covering a total distance of 241 kilometres with 106 stations, of which 123 kilometres will be constructed underground.
The new metro system will connect the main areas of Doha, including the Hamad International Airport, the Old City, and newly developing inner city areas such as West Bay and Lusail.

Many major cities in the Middle East are currently planning to develop advanced railway systems, and members of the consortium hope to leverage their industry leading experience with the Doha Metro and expand their business in the Middle East market.

Qatar Rail is the owner and manager of Qatar's rail network and responsible for the design, construction, commissioning, operation and maintenance of the entire rail network and systems.

Phase 1 of the Doha Metro network will be launched in 2019.