Turkey has announced the route for a 45km canal to cut traffic in the busy Bosporus Strait through Istanbul.

Kanal Istanbul will transform the European half of the city into an island, with the waterway linking the Black Sea and Sea of Marmara.

Work will begin this year, according to transport minister Ahmet Arslan.

Reuters reported that he did not specify the exact cost, but said the project would be funded through public and private partnerships.

The canal will run from the Durusu region on Istanbul’s Black Sea coast to Kucukcekmece Lake on the Sea of Marmara.