Dubai: A 32km-long cycling and running tracks project covering three residential districts of Dubai will be ready by November, the Roads and Transport Authority (RTA) announced on Saturday.

The new project will expand the city’s growing network of cycling tracks to 250km, one of the biggest in the region.

Covering the sprawling residential districts of Mushrif, Mirdiff and Al Khawaneej, the new cycling tracks are part of masterplan the will see the network expand further to 500km by 2021.

According to Mattar Al Tayer, Director-General and Chairman of the Board of Executive Directors of RTA 90 per cent of work on the project has been completed and the tracks will be open for public as early as this November.

“Our aim is to provide an infrastructure at residential districts that encourages residents to practice sport, in view of its immense health benefits to people. The project is also part of a master plan developed by RTA for providing dedicated cycling and running tracks covering the entire emirate that can also be used as environment-friendly mobility means for cycling enthusiasts. Advanced countries and communities pay much attention to raising the proportion of trips made by walking and cycling,” said Al Tayer.

Built at a cost of Dh67 million, the project covers cycling tracks extending 32 km at Mushrif, Midriff and Al Khawaneej along with two bridges for the combined use of cyclists and pedestrians on Al Khawaneej and the Academic City Streets.

“The selection of these areas was based on several criteria highlighted by the population density, appeal to cyclists and pedestrians, suitability of locations and the traffic safety level. Moreover, lanes have been designed in such a way that ensures the safety and security of cyclists,” added Al Tayer.

Over the last couple of years, RTA had constructed biking lanes extending 218km covering Seih Assalam/Bab Al Shams/Al Qudra Street, Dubai Water Canal, Jumeirah Street, King Salman Bin Abdul Aziz Al Saud Street and Al Mankhool Street. With the addition of the new 32km tracks the total network covers 250km.

“RTA is planning to construct more cycling tracks of around 234km during the period of 2018-2021. These lanes will pass through several areas including Al Warqaa, Jumeirah Beach, Nad Al Sheba, Expo 2020 site, Downtown, Jebel Ali, Al Quoz, Al Karama, Oud Metha, Hor Al Anz, Al Qusais and Al Barsha. These tracks will bring the total length of cycling lanes in Dubai to about 500 km by 2021,” said Al Tayer.