The local administration of Kirkuk agreed to convert the street on which the old Kirkuk governorate building is located into a cultural street, like Al-Mutanabi street in Baghdad, and restoration work is currently underway.
The municipality teams are currently rehabilitating the street in front of the old governorate building, which is also known as Bahou Street, and it is scheduled to open soon in front of intellectuals and artists, and will be called the “Cultural Street”.
Youssef Tayeb, director of the Cultural House in Kirkuk, a cultural center affiliated with the Iraqi Ministry of Culture, said in a statement to KirkukNow, "We had a desire, like most other cities of Iraq, to build a place or a street to display artistic and cultural works and events and become a meeting place for intellectuals, Artists and writers.”
"After constructing a new building for Kirkuk governorate, we thought about choosing the street in front of the old governorate building for this purpose and submitted a request to the Kirkuk governorate administration,” he added.
“Finally, it was decided to start the project.”
Located 238 kilometers north of Baghdad, the oil-rich city of Kirkuk is an ethnically mixed province for 1.7 million Kurds, Arabs, and Turkmens, Muslims, Christians and Kaka'is. It has long been at the center of disputes between Baghdad and the Erbil.
Currently, the Iraqi army, local and federal police, Special Forces along with Shiite paramilitary of Popular Mobilization Forces PMF, undertake the security of Kirkuk province and the disputed territories.
The director of the Cultural House in Kirkuk said, "This street will become a meeting place for intellectuals, and according to the project's details, no vehicles will use this street on Fridays, so that artists and intellectuals can easily display their products and activities."
Al-Bahou Street, which is currently being renovated, is located at the center of the city of Kirkuk.