University tunnel reopens tomorrow
The University Tunnel, a route for the sports complex and Imsida, will reopen tomorrow morning.
For the past weeks, the tunnel was not accessible because of ongoing works. Transport Malta chose to rebuild the University Tunnel, during the works for the Kappara Project. The tunnel was not part of the project however the Authority opted to rebuild it to avoid that Triq Mikiel Anton Vassalli is dug up for future maintenance of the tunnel.
Transport Malta built a wider and safer tunnel which is better suited for today’s University needs. The tunnel was completed with the works for the Kappara Project. The University of Malta then asked Transport Malta to also widen the road that leads to the tunnel. Thus, the Authority started widening this road immediately.
The works are now completed. The students, and those who visit the University can start using the new road and tunnel to go from University towards Imsida and the other way round, from tomorrow.
Transport Malta’s Road and Infrastructure Directorate designed a new solution for the Mellieħa Bypass, introducing safety measures, pedestrian and commuter cyclist facilities while keeping the four lanes.
Following concerns by residents and those who commute through the area of Mellieħa Bypass, the Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects, Ian Borg announced that a solution has been found for the existing four lanes to remain.
A few days ago, plans decided years back, to reduce accident risks in the Mellieħa Bypass, a main thoroughfare for the northern side of the island and Gozo, were announced. Through these plans, part of the bypass (Triq Louis Wettinger) was going to be narrowed from four lanes to three, two towards Ċirkewwa and one towards St. Paul’s Bay.
In the past days, Minister Borg heeded the concerns of the residents of Mellieħa and those who use this road. He discussed with local MP Clayton Bartolo and Mellieħa mayor John Buttigieg, who reiterated the residents’ concerns. The Minister then asked for the plans, approved in years past, to be reviewed for a better solution.
The architects of Transport Malta’s Road and Infrastructure Directorate, which will soon form the new roads agency, modified the plans to address current difficulties without narrowing the road. Thus, while still addressing safety concerns and introducing better facilities for pedestrians and cyclists, the road will remain with four lanes, two in each direction, as it is now. The Ministry will oversee the consultation on the alternative plans with the relevant authorities and entities, to make sure this solution is implemented shortly.
Minister Borg thanked all architects and officials who speedily found a solution for the benefit of those who use the road or reside in the area.
“I thank all those that in the past days voiced their genuine opinion so that this work is improved. I assure you that where there is need to revise current or past plans, to achieve better results, I will not keep back. I believe that challenges and difficulties like these are an opportunity to work better and achieve a better return on the unprecedented investment in our country’s infrastructure.”
The contractor will carry out road works in Triq L-Imsida in Gżira. Scarifying works and the laying of new asphalt will be carried out between 19:00hrs and 05:00hrs as from this evening. Works are expected to be ready by the end of this week.
Works will be carried out in phases so that the road will remain accessible to traffic as much as possible.
Drivers are encouraged to avoid the area as much as possible, follow the instructions by officials on site and drive with care.