Dubai residents are being advised to keep up to date with the schedule of the four-day Dubai Cycle Tour 2015 to be able to avoid specific roads that will remain closed to make way for cyclists participating in the race.
Covering a total of 660km, the race will be held in four stages.
The first one – the Westin Dubai Stage – will begin on Wednesday, February 4, and will run almost entirely along the city centre.
The route initially stretches to the South, towards Jebel Ali, and then turns back, leading through the Expo 2020 area and the Discovery Gardens. After running past Jumeirah Islands, the stage course hits Jumeirah Road.
On Wednesday, Al Maktoum Airport road should be avoided between 12.30pm to 1.25pm; Discovery Gardens between 1.15pm to 2.20pm and Jumeirah Road between 1.30pm to 2.35pm.
The second stage of the race – the Nakheel Stage – will be held on Thursday, February 5. The route will be through Silicon Oasis, the Camel Track, before reaching the Al-Qudra Cycletrack. In the second part, the stage course enters the city centre near Dubai Motor City and will lead all the way up to Palm Jumeirah.
Silicon Oasis should be avoided between 11.15am to 12.05pm; Al Quadra Street from 1.15pm to 2.20pm; Motor City between 1.45pm to 2.55pm; Jumeirah Islands from 2.15pm to 3.20pm and Palm Jumeirah from 2.30pm to 3.35pm.
Some schools on these roads will remain closed on the first two days whereas others will finish early to avoid traffic problems.
Some parents, especially working parents, are not happy for obvious reasons. “My kids’ school has informed us a bit too late and they will be open only for a few hours,” said a mother of two kids studying in Emirates International School in the Meadows (EIS-M).
The school will finish early at 11am on February 4 and 5, and parents were informed only yesterday.
“I see no reason why the school timings should clash with the race. And they told us too late, leaving working parents to make last minute arrangements. Since I don’t have a full time help at home, I will try to leave early from work to accommodate this,” she told Emirates 24|7.
Winchester School in The Gardens will function normally but parents have been informed of potential traffic disruptions around the routes until 3:30pm.
Some working parents have decided to make their children skip school due to the changes in pick-up timings.
On the other hand, Horizon School, located near Safa Park, will be closed today and tomorrow. “We are closed Wednesday and Thursday,” said the receptionist at the school.
Most other schools will, however, remain open, and are requesting parents to factor in some time to manage the pickups.
“Due to the Dubai Cycle Tour, there may potentially be traffic disruptions around the school site on Wednesday, February 4. It may be prudent to allow extra time to get to the school at pick-up time. School is open as normal and STS buses will operate as usual,” reads a notice sent out by Jumeirah Primary School.
The last two days will be relatively easier on residents’ schedule as we head into the weekend. On Friday, February 6 – the third day of the race (Dubai Silicon Oasis Stage) – the race will be marked across Emirates: Sharjah, Ras Al Khaimah and Fujairah.
Roads to avoid in the city during the day are Umm Squeim Street from 9.30am to 10.30am; Ras Al Khor road from 10.30am to11.45am; Al Awir road from 10.45am to 11.55pm and Dubai Hatta Road from 11.15am to 12.25pm.
The last stage of the race – Burj Stage – on Saturday, February 7, will roll across Dubai Old and New Town. The course first heads towards Meydan Racecourse, crosses Mushrif Park, hits the Al Mamzar beach; after rolling across Deira, the Al Maktoum Bridge and throughout the Old Town, the route brushes past Port Rashid and enters Jumeirah Road.
After taking a U-turn at Burj Al Arab to cruise back up along Jumeirah Road, the stage course then hits the Burj Khalifa, where the finish line is set.
Major roads to avoid are Nadd Al Hamar road from 12.45pm to 1.35pm; Tunis Road from 1pm to 1.50pm; Damascus Road from 1.15pm to 2.10pm; Al Khaleej Road from 1.30pm to 2.20pm and Jumeriah Road from 2.15pm to 3.20pm.