Gozo to lose 12,000sqm of agriculture to bypass project

Plans to improve the road network between Rabat and Marsalforn in Gozo will result in the loss of 12,000sq.m of agricultural land according to a Project Development Statement presented by the Gozo ministry

One of the major aspects of the project is the construction of a bypass that would extend from Triq Gorg Pisani to Triq Patri Gacintu Camenzuli in Rabat
One of the major aspects of the project is the construction of a bypass that would extend from Triq Gorg Pisani to Triq Patri Gacintu Camenzuli in Rabat

Plans to improve the road network between Rabat and Marsalforn in Gozo will result in the loss of 12,000sq.m of agricultural land according to a Project Development Statement presented by the Gozo ministry.

177 trees, of which 44 are protected, will be uprooted due to the project. These include 24 date palm trees, 11 Mediterranean cypress trees and nine pine cluster trees.

One of the major aspects of the project is the construction of a bypass that would extend from Triq Gorg Pisani to Triq Patri Gacintu Camenzuli in Rabat. This part of the project, which was already foreseen in the local plan approved in 2006, will result in the loss of 3,230sq.m. of agricultural land.

The bypass is also set to form part of “a proposed ring road around Rabat”.

A further 1,950sq.m. will be lost for the upgrading of the junction between Triq Kapuccini and Triq Patri Gacintu Camenzuli while 4,714sq.m will be required for “the improvement of visibility and ramps for field entrances”. Only 1,317sq.m of land is required for the inclusion of a cycle lane. The cycle lane will start at Triq il-Wied, Marsalforn, continue along the proposed project from Triq ir-Rabat, and terminate at a pedestrian crossing within Triq-Kappucini, in front of the convent.

Constructing the bypass is touted to reduce the distances, traffic pressure from the junction between Triq Kapuccini and Triq ir-Repubblika and traffic congestions and emissions.

The road is being designed in a way which does not “interfere” with the yet to be approved construction of the Agritourism Complex at Ta’ Mena Estate. The works also foresee an extension and rehabilitation of an existing vehicular bridge located in the vicinity of Ta’ Mena Estates.

When commenting on the present situation the report only refers to “occasional congestion occurring in the initial segment of the street, which serves as an arm for the roundabout junction connecting Triq Kapuccini with Triq ir-Repubblika and Triq Taht il-Putirjal”.

But while noting that, in general, the road link does not suffer from traffic congestion in either traffic flow direction, the report refers to the lack of any pedestrian or cyclist facilities and to various safety hazards.

The link from Triq Kappuccini up to Triq ir-Rabat, is currently a single carriageway with a landscaped area in between the lanes. However, according to the report, the current alignment poses a safety hazard, “especially due to the very high speeds recorded along the link”.

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