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Traffic in Mrieħel justifies Central Link project - Transport Minister

Authorities mull having traffic officials at roundabouts in the afternoon

Traffic congestion on the Mrieħel bypass proved the necessity of the Central Link Project, according to Transport Minister Ian Borg.

Commuters are spending less time travelling through Aldo Moro and the Marsa-Ħamrun bypass because of recent road upgrading, but they are getting stuck in the Mrieħel-Attard area, Dr Borg told Times of Malta.

“The congestion in the Attard area is also impacting Żebbuġ. The project has been planned for decades, and its need is being felt now more than ever,” he said.

Read: 1,400 submissions on controversial Central Link project

Dr Borg has also asked the authorities to monitor the Qormi and Żebbuġ roundabouts throughout the afternoon and consider deploying traffic officials, just as is done in the morning.

These roundabouts were recently widened to ease bottlenecks. Work on the Żebbuġ roundabout was carried out during the summer, as part of the €17 million investment in road upgrades.

The transport authorities tried to make the best out of the summer months, which see better weather and fewer cars on the roads, the minister added.

In some instances, road works were carried out throughout the night.

Among others, work was carried out on seven lanes on Aldo Moro Road, which will soon increase to 10, before work kicks off on the flyovers.

The authorities had received positive feedback following the increased safety and ease of exiting villages from around the Mosta Technopark and Żebbuġ roundabouts.

Apart from widening some roads, others needed narrowing, among them Triq taċ-Ċawsli, he noted. There, the pavement was being widened to increase safety for pedestrians who crossed from Żejtun to Żabbar, while the cycling lanes will be segregated.

Referring to the announcement of the first tender in a series that will see the resurfacing of 120 residential streets, Dr Borg said that the whole procurement system had been changed, as small and large tenders used to take the same amount of time to complete past. Tenders are now being grouped to improve efficacy.

Dr Borg highlighted some of Infrastructure Malta's work over the summer:

17.4 kilometres of new or rebuilt lanes
18 junctions were upgraded
42 per cent shorter travel time recorded on the Marsa-Ħamrun bypass
Improved bypass lane off the Mosta Technopark roundabout
Improved access to Gudja and Għaxaq off Triq tal-Barrani
Safer exit from Ta’ Qali through Ħemsija
New lanes in Triq Aldo Moro as part of the Marsa Junction Project
Bottleneck eliminated at T’Alla u Ommu
New lanes and safer connections on Triq Diċembru 13
Less travel time from Kirkop tunnels through Vjal l-Avjazzjoni
Two roundabouts upgraded and a new lane introduced on Triq l-Imdina, Żebbuġ

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