Al Batinah Expressway is a 270km-long, eight-lane highway connecting the Muscat Expressway in Barka with Khutmat Al-Milahah in Shinas, Oman. The new expressway, which links Muscat to the Sohar Port and industrial area and to the UAE border, was opened to traffic in May 2018.

The project was developed with an investment of OMR1bn ($2.6bn), making it one of the biggest civil engineering and infrastructure projects in the Middle East.

The Al Batinah Expressway construction was initially divided into six packages by the Ministry of Transport and Communications (MOTC) of Oman.

Al Batinah Expressway details

The Al Batinah Expressway originates at the end of the Muscat Highway near Halban intersection and passes through the governorates of Muscat, North and South Batinah, before terminating at Khutmat Al-Milahah in the Wilayat of Shinas region.

The expressway has four 3.75m-wide lanes on each side with internal and external shoulders. It also has 23 interchanges, 17 flyovers, 12 underpasses, 25 water crossings, a 12m-wide traffic island, as well as 3m external and 2m internal asphalt shoulders. A total of 1,106 box culverts were built to reduce traffic congestion.

The carriageway also features trucks weighing stations, pedestrian flyovers and rest houses, and locations for parking ambulance and Oman Police cars.

Al Batinah Expressway construction

Construction on the first of six packages began in April 2012. It included the construction of a 45.5km-long section from the end of Muscat Expressway in Barka to Khubat Al-Qadan. It has five intersections, five flyovers, two water crossing bridges, 235 box culverts and an underpass.

Starting from Khubat Al-Qadan to Wadi Al-Hamili in Al-Suwaiq, the 44.75km-long second package covered four intersections, two underpasses, seven water crossing bridges, 165 box culverts and a flyover.

The 46.2km-long third package, from Wadi Al-Hamili to Hafeet in Saham, includes five intersections, four water crossing bridges, 220 box culverts, four flyovers and camels crossing the road.

The fourth package starts from Hafeet in Saham and ends at Sohar. The 43.5km-long section includes two intersections, 198 box culverts, four flyovers, an underpass, and a rest area.

Built between Sohar and Liwa, the 41km-long fifth package includes three intersections, three water crossing bridges, four underpasses, 132 box culverts, one flyover and a rest area.

The final package of the project is a 45km-long section between Liwa and Khutmat Al-Milahah. It includes four intersections, four water crossing bridges, 150 box culverts, four underpasses and a rest area.

Financing for Al Batinah expressway

The Kuwait Fund for Arab Economic Development signed an agreement with the Government of the Sultanate of Oman to provide OMR672.595m ($1.75bn) funding for the Al Batinah expressway project in November 2014.

The MOTC received funding of OMR378,805 ($980,758) from the Tender board (TB) of the Sultanate of Oman for the design and supervision of the highway in 2016.

Contractors involved

Driver Trett was selected as the project management consultant, while Wessex Archaeology provided an archaeological survey for the Al Batinah expressway.

Galfar received a $358m contract for the construction of the first section of the project in March 2012.

MOTC awarded a contract to a JV of Simplex Infrastructures and Konstruktor for the construction of the third package of the Batinah Expressway.

Pitchmastic PmB International was contracted to provide a structural waterproofing system for the third package of the project.

Larsen & Toubro (L&T) received a contract worth OMR135.6m ($351.2m) in July 2013 for the construction of the fourth package of the Al Batinah expressway including two grade-separated interchanges, five water bridges and cross drainage works. The company secured another contract in March 2014 for the construction of Bidbid-Sur road section.

Oman’s MOTC  awarded an OMR132.6m ($345m) contract to a joint venture (JV) led by Federici Stirling Batco for the fifth package.