The strike by transport operators and its negative effects on the economy (4)
As a result of the transport strike, the Malta Transport Authority (ADT) set up an emergency ferry service from Vittoriosa Waterfront to Valletta. This is excellent news. It now remains to turn this emergency service into something permanent.
In the past, I have written about the need to utilise our Grand Harbour as a superhighway linking Valletta with the Three Cities, Kalkara, Marsa and the densely populated area behind these towns. Now, we also have to consider SmartCity. Thousands of people will be working there and they all have cars! It will only take a few minutes to go from Vittoriosa to Valletta by ferry. By car it can be well over half an hour. Think of the pollution, congestion, waste of time, the increase in carbon footprint.
Maybe the SmartCity operators might want to consider such a facility.
A functioning Grand Harbour ferry service will create the demand; competition by various operators (the service should, of course, be liberalised) will keep prices down.
All this should be coupled with a modern lift right up into Valletta (Yes, why not rebuild it on the site of the old Upper Barrakka lift, leading straight into the heart of Valletta?
There is probably not a better or a more practical site for a lift).
Think also of the thousands of cruise liner passengers who opt to trudge in the heat up innumerable steps into Valletta rather than be taken for a ride(!) by taxi and karozzin drivers (waiting like vultures for them).
They would find a lift useful and might also venture to see the treasures of Vittoriosa on the other side of the harbour if a ferry service were available.
Now is the time for strong and imaginative decisions.