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Royal HaskoningDHV to undertake market study for Haramain project in Saudi Arabia

The Haramain High Speed Rail project represents one of the most important transport projects in the expansion program of Saudi railway network. (Image source: Royal HaskoningDHV)

Royal HaskoningDHV has been appointed to carry out a detailed market study for the Haramain High Speed Railway in Saudi Arabia

The Haramain High Speed Railway is a new 449km rail line, which will provide a world-class passenger service from Makkah to Madinah, via Jeddah and King Abdullah Economic City.

The railway will be operated by the Al-Shoula Consortium on behalf of the Saudi Railways Organization (SRO). The consortium has appointed Royal HaskoningDHV for the company?s expertise in railways and transport planning to undertake the market study.

The surveys will examine in detail current travel patterns, potential passenger profiles, economic characteristics and customer expectations towards the rail service. They are planned to be executed at strategically identified sites such as highway check points, bus and taxi interchanges in Makkah and Jeddah, key locations in King Abdulaziz International Airport terminals, and on board the new railway service.

Following this, a comprehensive technical analysis will be carried out to examine future travel demand and estimate passenger demand forecasts for the new high speed railway.

Dr Marwan Al-Azzawi, Royal HaskoningDHV?s director of transport and planning said, ?Royal HaskoningDHV has been working in the Middle East for more than 50 years and our local knowledge of the kingdom, combined with our international expertise in railways and transport planning, makes us well-placed to undertake this important market study. Our work will enable the government to deliver this world-class high speed railway service for the country.?

Royal HaskoningDHV?s technical analysis will help the SRO to identify its most likely passenger levels and their needs. It will also help to develop targeted operations strategies to offer passengers the most suitable and efficient services.

The market study is also an opportunity to assess the rail passenger market conditions for the new Haramain High Speed Railway services and to obtain in-depth insights from potential customers and businesses. 

An important dimension to the study is to consider the needs of pilgrims to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, as the high speed railway links the two holy cities of Makkah and Madinah, and will play a pivotal role during the Hajj and Umrah pilgrimages.

Al-Shoula Consortium is operating within a 12-year railway operations franchise contract for SRO. The Saudi Arabian government?s SRO appreciates the various local planning and traffic police authorities for their assistance and support during the study process.