A tunnel is set to partially open to traffic tomorrow as part of the multi-million dinar revamp of one the major arterial thoroughfares in the heart of the capital.

Work of the project is progressing at a rapid pace, engineers say, and the authorities have requested drivers to observe and obey all traffic rules for their own safety as well as the safety of everyone else on the road.

The Al Fateh Highway underpass is part of a busy intersection at the Al Fateh Grand Mosque junction with Awal Avenue and Bani Otbah Avenue.

Details of the latest planned opening were announced by the Works Ministry in co-ordination with the General Directorate of Traffic.In the tunnel, two lanes will be opened for southbound traffic travelling towards Mina Salman and one lane will be opened for northbound traffic towards Bahrain Bay.

Two additional lanes will also be opened for northbound traffic through a traffic lights system set above the tunnel.Also effective from tomorrow, southbound traffic from Bani Otbah Avenue towards Mina Salman will be closed for five months.

Traffic will have to head northbound and use the U-turn flyover to change direction.Construction work started in April 2021 and the BD40.5 million project, which includes two flyovers and the underpass, is set for completion next March.

The finished project will see the Al Fateh Highway expanded into a flowing four lanes in each direction, plus a three-lane each-way tunnel, in addition to the provision of a ground intersection controlled by traffic lights.Once completed, the highway will have a capacity to accommodate 140,000 vehicles per day, up by 61 per cent from the current 87,000 figure.

The Tender Board awarded the infrastructure project to Nass Contracting and Huta Hegerfeld Consortium. Financed by the Saudi Fund for Development, the project is being carried out under the supervision of the Parsons engineering consultancy firm. 

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