Amid local cyclists' joy

Kirkuk launches dedicated bicycle lane

KIRKUK – Kirkuk has become the first Iraqi city to inaugurate a dedicated bicycle lane to reduce car dependency, alleviate traffic congestion, and enhance environmental sustainability. The initial 2km path starts from Al-Quds Street, passes through Ihtifalat Square, and loops back to Al-Quds Street, with plans for future expansions. Plastic barriers and rubber poles separate the bicycle lane from vehicle lanes.

The project was inaugurated with a 9km marathon by 32 cyclists from Kirkuk, starting from the Rahimawa neighborhood. Government officials attended the ceremony, which featured a blue-painted lane executed by the Kirkuk Municipality in collaboration with Yasharlar Traffic Engineering Company, supported by local police and traffic authorities.

“This unique initiative brings great joy to our city’s cyclists,” said Nihad Osman, head of the Kirkuk Bicycle Team.

Haider Khalil, Director of Yasharlar Traffic Engineering Company, told 964media, “This environmentally friendly design is crucial for the city’s infrastructure. We urge citizens to keep the lane clear of parked vehicles as it can damage the paint.”

Amir Nariman, Director of Kirkuk Traffic Media, praised the initiative, noting, “This commendable effort by the Kirkuk administration provides a dedicated space for the many young people who enjoy cycling. Parking on this lane is strictly prohibited, and shop owners are also banned from placing goods on the path.”

He added that violators will be penalized to reduce traffic accidents, especially collisions and pedestrian incidents.

Kirkuk municipal officials say they plan to implement similar projects in other areas and on main roads.