Qatar Road Network

By | December 1, 2022

Qatar’s highway network.

A highway in Qatar is referred to as الطرق السريعة in Arabic and as an expressway in English.

According to wholevehicles, Qatar’s road network is not very extensive, because almost all traffic flows in the capital Doha. There are approximately 250 kilometers of highway in Qatar. 130 kilometers of it form an arc through the desert and are of little significance for inland traffic. There is one highway bypass in Doha, the rest of the roads are wide boulevards with traffic lights and lots of traffic jams. There is a new highway along the airport. The main highway is Route 5, which runs from Doha to the border with Saudi Arabiaruns for 85 kilometers. A 40-kilometer-long bridge between Qatar and Bahrain is planned, which was supposed to open in 2013, but has been shut down since 2008. Since 2010, Doha’s highway network has been significantly expanded by making ring roads and approach roads grade-separated. Many highways are built directly with 2×4 lanes.

Outside the highways, there are a number of 2×2 desert roads that are not grade separated, such as Route 1 from Doha to the north. These usually have roundabouts, as do most bypasses in the outskirts of Doha.

Between 2010 and 2017, a 40 billion rial (€10 billion) road program was implemented. The road program included 240 grade separations, 360 bridges and 1,000 kilometers of new or upgraded roads.

Motorways in Qatar
Q1 • Q2 • Q3 • Q4 • Q5 • Q6 • Q39 • Q141Al Khor Expressway • Al Wakrah Bypass • Orbital Road • Hamad Port Road • Ras Abu Abboud Street • East Industrial Street • Lusail Expressway • Al Rayyan Road • Sabah Al-Ahmad Corridor

Doha Ring Roads: B • C • D • E • F • G

History

Qatar did not develop until late. In 1970, the country had only 111,000 inhabitants, 80,000 of whom lived in the capital Doha. Qatar initially did not experience the development that the United Arab Emirates did from the 1970s. It was not until 2005 that Doha’s population started to grow strongly, mainly because of the massive migration of workers from abroad, especially from South Asia. Before 2005 Qatar had no real highways, although major roads in Doha were dual carriageway with 2×2 or 2×3 lanes. The road from Doha to the north (Route 1) and from Doha to Saudi Arabia (Route 5) were also dual carriageways. However, almost all intersections in Qatar were roundabouts. It was not until around 2004 that Qatar’s first expressway, the Doha Expressway (Route 1), opened. That year also saw the construction of the first grade-separated intersection of Route 5 in Doha.

Congestion started to get serious in Doha from 2005 due to the poorly developed road network, traffic concentrated on the dual carriageways which had roundabouts and traffic lights. Between 2005 and 2010, a large number of grade separated intersections in and around Doha were built and Qatar’s two traditional long-haul roads (Route 1 to the north and Route 5 to Saudi Arabia) were widened to 2×4 lanes and completely graded. The Ras Abu Abboud Expressway was built along Doha Airport between 2008 and 2010.

After 2010, investments were made in Doha’s ring structure, although most of the ring roads are still level and Doha does not have as many urban highways as in other Gulf countries. A temporary truck route was built around Doha in 2015, allowing traffic from Mesaieed to Lusail west around the city. This was not a full-fledged highway, but largely a fairly narrow 2×2 dual carriageway through the desert, with mostly roundabouts as connections. The cloverleaf cloverleaf with Route 5 west of Doha, which was opened around 2007, has been converted into a turbine interchange from 2015 onwards. Between 2011 and 2014, Route 3 (Dukhan Highway) was widened and upgraded from Doha to the west.

From 2015 a large-scale bypass along the west side of Doha was built to replace the temporary truck route. This is the New Orbital Highway and Truck Route. The East-West Corridor Expressway has also been constructed along the south side of Doha. The Lusail Expressway, Qatar’s first new urban expressway, has been constructed in the north of Doha.

Road management

The national road authority of Qatar is Ashghal (Arabic: هيئة الأشغال العامة).

Qatar Road Network