Five stations have opened along the Dubai Metro Red line, increasing the number of operational stations along the route to 29.

The stations, which opened on 15 October, include Business Bay, First Gulf Bank, Sharaf DG , Nakheel and Jumeirah Lakes Towers.

The last three stations – Energy, Jebel Ali Industrial and Jebel Ali Free Zone – will open in the first quarter of next year.

With the opening of the stations, the Dubai Roads and Transport Authority expects passenger numbers to jump from 130,000 a day to about 145,000.

The AED28bn ($7.6bn) Dubai Metro project is 76km long and consists of 52.1km of Red Line track and 23.9km of Green Line track, and may open in August next year.

The authority has reduced waiting times of trains at stations from 30 seconds to 20 seconds and increased the total journey time on one side of the Red Line by 2min.

It has also increased the operational hours of the Metro by an hour on Thursdays and Fridays, according to

In addition, 22 trains will be deployed during rush hour and 16 during regular hours on Thursdays and Fridays.