The general public in the UAE, who visited the UAE Innovation Exhibit held at City Walk 2, were able to catch a glimpse of the future transport in the UAE, wherein the concept model of the ‘Hyperloop Commuter Tube Pod’ was exhibited.
Dubai is currently hosting the last week of the ‘UAE Innovation Month’, and this presentation by Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) was one of the 90 displays.
The innovation exhibit was unveiled by Shaikh Hamdan bin Mohammad bin Rashid Al Maktoum, the Dubai Crown Prince. The Chairman of the Board and Director-General of RTA, Mattar Al Tayer, toured the pod, along with Shaikh Hamdan inside the pod, which will serve as a ‘shortcut’ into the future.
The final week of the exhibition includes innovation by Dubai Police, DEWA and other government entities.
As part of the RTA display, road officials exhibited several initiatives like autonomous pods. The RTA confirmed that the Hyperloop project has grown to the stage, where the agency is considering possible routes for futuristic transportation mode across the emirate and beyond.
The Hyperloop pod display is held in collaboration with Virgin Hyperloop One, and the Chairman Richard Branson is working closely with Dubai RTA.
According to Al Tayer, the Hyperloop is part of an initiative by Dubai RTA for Dubai Future Accelerators. Once introduced, the Hyperloop technology will bear an impact on town planning and parking space availability. It will revolutionise movement of people from one destination to another in the city, particularly in ports, airports and shipping patterns.
According to the Executive Director of Rail Planning and Project Development at RTA, Abdul Reda Abu Al Hassan, the Hyperloop’s concept model will get operational in next five years.
Every Hyperloop Pod will have a gold class with capacity for five passengers, a silver class with capacity for 14 passengers. The pod does not have windows to prevent motion sickness, as it will be in a covered vacuum tube.
The Hyperloop, however, will not replace the Dubai Metro, which is designed for short-distance travel, with multiple stops within a single network. The Hyperloop, on the other-hand, is designed for long-distance travel.
The general public, however, have expressed their excitement over the concept that the travel time between Dubai and Abu Dhabi would be reduced to just 12 minutes with the Hyperloop.