A FEASIBILITY study into the construction of a second causeway between Bahrain and Saudi Arabia, which will include the first rail link to Bahrain, will be completed in the first quarter of this year.
Maryam Ahmed Jumaan, under-secretary for land transport at the Bahrain Ministry of Transport, said the study, which is being conducted by SNC Lavalin, is nearing completion and the results will be made public next month.
Jumaan said the study proposes two possible routes for the new 87-km link and both would connect with new freight and passenger terminals situated on reclaimed land on either side of the sea, according to the International Railway Journal.
It is proposed that the link will comprise 28 km of approach tracks, a 26-km causeway and a 10-km bridge.
Trains will travel at up to 120 kmph and the study estimates that they would carry up to 143,000 containers in the first year of operation rising to 343,000 in 2030 and 602,000 by 2050.
Construction is expected to take five to six years to complete with a provisional opening date of 2022, according to the report.
A second phase of the rail project envisages connections with Bahrain’s new port and airport while a third will cross the country to link with the proposed causeway to Qatar.
Jumaan said that it may still possible to complete the link in time for the Qatar World Cup in 2022.