The first tenders for the light rail system in Iraqi Kurdistan’s Suleimaniyah city are expected to be floated in 2014.

The $1bn project comprises six lines totalling 58 kilometres.

Italian firm SGI (Studio Galli Ingegneria) submitted the preliminary design in Ocober 2012, with final designs completed in May this year.

Speaking at MEED’s rail conference, Fabio Buonomo, deputy managing director in the Middle East at SGI, told delegates that decisions regarding how to develop the project still needed to be made, but he recommended to opt for turnkey tenders.

Suleimaniyah is also developing a transport masterplan for the city to assess how best to integrate the light rail network into its urban environment.