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Attard council repeatedly asked for roadworks information

Emails to ministry about Triq il-Linja plans went unanswered

Roadworks in Triq il-Linja created gridlock in Attard. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

Roadworks in Triq il-Linja created gridlock in Attard. Photo: Matthew Mirabelli

Repeated requests by the Attard local council to provide information about roadworks on one of the locality’s busy roads remained unanswered, according to correspondence seen by Times of Malta.

The local council enquired about alternative commuting routes as far back as July 31 – before roadworks in Triq il-Linja started and created gridlock in Attard.

It also asked for wardens or transport officials to be on site to direct traffic, and called for “adequate traffic management” as part of the road was one-way, and it formed part of the buses’ route.

Infrastructure Malta informed the council on August 2 that the start date would “probably” be after mid-August. Several reminders later, the council was still without the requested information, and on Tuesday it asked for an urgent meeting.

Speaking to the Times of Malta following a “positive meeting” held on Thursday, mayor Stefan Cordina thanked Perit Graziella Galea and Lawrence Darmanin from Infrastructure Malta for their assistance.

He said the council has been told that roadworks will last around two more weeks and will be completed before the start of the scholastic year.

New alternative routes will be put in place and the number of TM officials will increase. Of course, the inconvenience resulting from the road closure would remain, Mr Cordina said.

The roadworks will be completed before the start of the scholastic year

Earlier, the council told the Times of Malta that the conditions it had requested when it confirmed its no objection to the roadworks permit, were not adhered to and correspondence “clearly” showed repeated requests for information had been ignored.

READ: Central Link project 'blatantly contradicts' local plan - AD

It was reacting to comments by Infrastructure Minister Ian Borg who on Wednesday said those complaining about the gridlock were also against the Central Link project. He said he was shocked that the council was surprised about the roadworks, adding: “I think the council is glad the government is carrying out work it should have done itself but had no resources to do.”

But while it appreciated the much-needed roadworks in residential roads, the council yesterday appealed for better coordination.

“The minister chooses to bring the Central Link Project into the story. This is another issue altogether. With regards to the rebuilding and resurfacing of residential roads, this was always a problem.

“The Local Council Act only requires councils to carry out simple maintenance work. In fact, this is reflected in their financial resources, which are provided entirely by central government. No funds are earmarked for road resurfacing and rebuilding since this has always been the remit of central government.”

Meanwhile, the Attard Residents Environmental Network noted “with satisfaction” the minister’s acknowledgment that lack of co-ordination and proper planning was “the main issue behind the traffic experienced by the thousands” driving from Qormi towards Żebbuġ.

The Network said it had alerted the public about the closures of Żebbuġ and Tal-Linja roads before Transport Malta and continued to monitor the area and provide real-time information on its social media page.

 

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