Last Updated on Tuesday, 31 May, 2022 at 1:06 pm by Andre Camilleri
Infrastructure Malta (IM) is lifting in place the concrete beams that will support the ceiling slab of the new Mrieħel underpass. This was announced by Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects Aaron Farrugia during an on-site visit with Infrastructure Malta CEO Trustin Farrugia Cann.
The Mrieħel Underpass Project was launched last year to build a new 60-metre tunnel connecting Mdina Road with the Mrieħel bypass at the junction next to the Malta Financial Services Authority offices.
IM is working to open this underpass to commuters by the end of September, and to complete the roundabout above it by the end of the year.
In February, IM completed the excavation of this underpass and started erecting 290 precast concrete panels to form its walls. This week, workers lifted in place the first of 16 prestressed concrete beams, each weighing six tonnes, that will support the tunnel roof. When the tunnel is ready, IM will continue the project with the new roundabout above it, as well as new pedestrian and cycling crossings and landscaped areas.
Minister Farrugia said that this investment will continue to minimise bottlenecks and complement the Central Link Project. Apart from addressing traffic, it will also focus on improving safety and security of people, particularly by creating safer pedestrian and cycling crossings.
From his end, Trustin Farrugia Cann said that the improvement of roads is a continuous process because the travelling needs in our country are ever-changing. “In order to continue meeting these needs, we need to continue investing in better roads, sustainable roads. One project after the other, links in the same chain.”
Just like the Santa Luċija Roundabout Underpass Project was developed to extend the benefits of the Marsa Junction Project along the main route to southern Malta, Infrastructure Malta planned the Mrieħel Underpass Project to augment the positive impacts of Central Link Project in Attard, Balzan, Birkirkara and Mrieħel.
The two-lane underpass will form part of a new roundabout intersection that is replacing the old traffic lights system at this important crossroads between Balzan, Birkirkara and Mrieħel. Through this tunnel, the main eastbound traffic flows, from Mdina Road, Balzan, towards the Mrieħel bypass (Royal Malta Artillery Avenue), will be grade-separated from the other flows converging at this junction.