An interest in making Istanbul a more bicycle-friendly city has prompted the city to install 36 kilometers of bicycle lanes on its Anatolian and European sides as part of a four-step project carried out by the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality’s Transportation Coordination Administration.
The administration’s first step is to study 18-kilometer-long bike lanes built on both sides of Istanbul, totaling 36 kilometers, according to Anatolia news agency. The preliminary studies also cover rehabilitation of bike lanes in other parts of the city.
The bike lane route on the European side extends along Kennedy Street, Ekrem Kurt Boulevard, the Zeytinburnu Metro Station and the Veliefendi Hippodrome. The Anatolian side route extends along Bostancı, Göztepe Park, Bağdat Street, and Kadıköy Square. The first step of the project also aims to integrate the public transportation system with bike lanes.
The municipality announced on its website that Law no. 5216 provided for 630 kilometers of bike routes. The municipality’s project, which is to be carried out in four steps and concluded in 2023, determined the routes, and the construction plans for the total route have been completed. The project includes connection lines between the main routes to maintain the continuity of the routes and connect with districts, increasing the total bike lane length to 1,004 kilometers.
The plan is an ambitious one for a Turkish city, where bicycle usage is not very common. In the Dutch capital Amsterdam, where cycling is a chief means of transportation, there are 400 kilometers of bike lanes.