A new crossing that will connect the New Doha International Airport and the West Bay financial district in the Qatari capital is being designed by a European firm and will be announced by the beginning of September, a senior Qatari ministry official said this week.
Ministry of Municipality and Urban Planning senior transportation engineer Saad Khodr told sister magazine MEED’s Qatar Projects conference in London that the structure would be the most “iconic” in Doha and would feature both a tunnelled section and a bridge that would cost in the region of 20bn Qatari Riyals (£3.44bn).
The tunnelled section is a necessity due to the flight path to the New Doha International airport currently under construction.
Originally about 20 consultants were asked to present their designs to the Emir of Qatar for his approval.
Five groups went through to a final stage including UK teams from including Grismhaw, Arup, Atkins, Halcrow and Foster+Partners.
However, Khodr said none of the designs had pleased the Emir.
“The Emir wanted something that as you soon as you see it says Doha,” he said.
“Like the Golden Gate Bridge or the Sydney [Harbour] Bridge.”
He said the Emir asked for “one more concept” by the European consultant, which will be revealed after the holy festival of Ramadan (September).
Khodr also announced that a new authority will be created specifically to manage the project.
“It will not come under Ashghal [the Qatar roads authority], there will be a special authority set up just to run this one project,” he said.
The crossing is hoped to alleviate traffic woes in the central business district of West Bay as it will divert traffic from the sea-front Doha Corniche.