12 MARCH 2018: For Hamad Al Oqayli, a Track Engineer at the Track Joint Venture (TJV) (FAST/Alstom), the opportunity to use his skills and experience to make a real difference to the future of the Saudi capital and the lives of its residents is a constant source of motivation.
“This is a one-of-a-kind project, and I wake up every day excited to be part of it. Riyadh is unique in the sense that public transport came late. Building it [the Metro] in a live city is a massive challenge,” says Al Oqayli.
A native of Qassim, Al Oqayli began his career as a civil and track engineer with the Saudi Railway Company (SAR) for seven years, working on the strategically-important CTW120 North-South Railway between Dammam and Jubail. As well as developing an intimate understanding of the technical complexities of long-distance rail systems in harsh environments, he also knows about the long-term socio-economic impacts of mass transit.
“Railways are linear projects connecting cities and are not easy to implement. But with an urban metro you are interacting with people’s lives on many levels. It is essential to gain public support for and acceptance of a Metro project and communicate its benefits,” he says.
Al Oqayli says where he once worked as the client at SAR, his priority as a track engineer at FAST is to deliver ‘engineering value’ for the client.
“That’s really exciting because it is about offering the client contractor more efficient and economical solutions for the best quality, and it is a great motivator.”
Al Oqayli is inspired by the advanced Alstom technologies he and his teams are installing on Lines 4, 5 and 6 which will power and control the driverless train sets and control systems. He also points out that the unique construction techniques and feats he has been exposed to on package 3 have left a lasting impression.Subscribe to continue reading...