The Malta Independent 21 July 2018, Saturday

Project to link different means of transport to reduce traffic congestion

Tuesday, 2 January 2018, 08:18 Last update: about 8 months ago

Transport Malta, together with the Transport Ministry, will start implementing a project which links together different means of transport as part of a strategic plan to address the traffic problem, as well as to reduce car pollution.

The development of a sea transport service and better use of the routes are among the main objectives of this project.

The sea transport service which links Valletta with Sliema and Cottonera respectively is expected to be developed into a better more integrated system by sea, as explained by Transport Malta official, Peter Paul Barbara.

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“A quay is going to be built as well as passenger waiting facilities where people can take shelter while waiting for the boat. Along with Marsamxett and Cospicua, we will be adding Ta’ Xbiex and St Julian’s while there is a pilot project planned for St Paul’s Bay. We will see what the uptake by the public will be, since we are moving away from the harbour. There will be a service which will start in St Julian’s then go to Sliema, and then Ta’ Xbiex – the idea is to make it as if you are going by bus”.

Transport Minister, Ian Borg, said that this project is estimated to cost more than €13 million, and is part of a five year project called SMITHS.  It has the aim of creating an integrated system of public transport to help cut down on the use of private vehicles as well as to reach our targets to reduce pollution.

“The inter-modularity is a very important point when providing alternative means of transport to private car use. The fact that someone uses one of the ferries means that eventually when they come on land they will use either a bus or rent a bike or share a car with someone else,” said the Minister.

Minister Borg said that over the next few weeks, various tenders will be issued to carry out the work following several months of planning on how to obtain European funds for this project.

Barbara said that this system will include other services, including facilities for the use of bicycles, car sharing and a great emphasis on public transport.  “The localities were chosen in a strategic way, the university,  Mater Dei, colleges such as MCAST and so on, industrial areas and tourist zones. The concept is to go beyond the use of the private car.”

The Transport Malta official said that by means of 100 cameras in 27 different areas, the flow of traffic can be followed by the new central control system at Sa Maison.

 

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