Cross-party opposition for Infrastructure Malta Mrieħel flyover plans

Almost all PN and ADPD candidates, and a PL candidate, join Qormi residents' opposition to the Qomi-Mrieħel flyover proposition

Residents and activists raised concerns over the Infrastructure Malta plans in 2020
Residents and activists raised concerns over the Infrastructure Malta plans in 2020

Candidates from the Labour party, the Nationalist party and ADPD have endorsed Qormi local council plans to protect the agricultural land in Mrieħel.

Qormi residents asked all electoral candidates in the district whether they supported the local council plans to save land in the area, opposing Infrastracture Malta's plans for a flyover at the Qormi-Mrieħel bypass.

"This area is currently under threat by Infrastructure Malta plans to widen the road by taking up agricultural land that is equivalent to the size of three football pitches. Infrastructure Malta’s plans would destroy a huge water reservoir, uproot trees which are hundreds of years old and destroy farming land that has belonged to the same families for generations," the residents said.

They said Infrastructure Malta had initiated the plans quietly, saying farmers only learnt of the plans after receiving a notification to “upgrade the area”.

After meeting with Infrastructure Malta, the Qormi local council had unanimously approved a resolution urging Infrastructure Malta to drop its plans. "These plans would not take up any agricultural land and would safeguard one of the last green lungs in the area. In fact, the council proposed a four-lane underpass which would omit the possibility of any land expropriation. A fifth lane would exist for accidents and emergencies."

Infrastructure Malta head Frederick Azzopardi has recently said Infrastructure Malta was still analysing the local council's plans.

Labour candidate Sean Apap Meli expressed his support to the council’s motion. Nationalist party candidates Ryan Callus, Jerome Caruana Cilia, Alessia Psaila Zammit and Frederick Aquilina all expressed their opposition to Infrastructure Malta’s plans. ADPD candidate Sandra Gauci also said she supports saving the agricultural land in the area.

Qormi residents said they were disappointed by the lack of response from several Labour party candidates, including Ministers and Members of Parliament.

They said Labour party "stalwarts" such as President Emeritus Marie Louise Coleiro Preca and MEP Alfred Sant have also opposed the project, "which would deprive Qormi residents and the general public of one of the last green lungs in the area and would affect many farmers' livelihoods."

The candidates that supported the Local Council proposal were Sean Apap Meli (PL), Ryan Callus (PN), Jerome Caruana Cilia (PN), Alessia Psaila Zammit (PN), Frederick Aquilina (PN) and Sandra Gauci (ADPD).