25 Mar
Infrastructure Malta accepts residents requests for new Dingli road

Infrastructure Malta accepts residents requests for new Dingli road

Following discussions with all stakeholders, Infrastructure Malta is accepting the requests of San Gwann Bosco Street’s families to optimise its plans for the new schemed road it is building between this street, Dahla tas-Sienja Street and Il-Museum Alley, in Dingli.

Infrastructure Malta is publishing a correspondence with representatives of these families, in which it confirms its acceptance of the seven requests they made. Read the full correspondence here. 

The residents' requests include a confirmation that land next to the new schemed road is not earmarked for development, a confirmation that no more carob trees will be uprooted to build the new road, the limiting of the new road’s width to eight metres, the adjustment of a corner (splay) of this new road to save a nearby tree, the erection of traditional rubble walls instead of limestone walls in San Gwann Bosco Street and in the new road, and the planting of more indigenous trees along the side of the new road. Infrastructure Malta discussed these requests with the authorities concerned and is taking all of them on board. 

The San Gwann Bosco Street residents’ proposal to plant trees along the sides of the new road will be discussed with the owners of the adjacent lands so that Infrastructure Malta can add at least 12 more mature indigenous trees in this area.

In his correspondence with the residents’ representatives, Ing. Fredrick Azzopardi, Infrastructure Malta’s Chief Executive Officer, noted that during the last few months Infrastructure Malta met representatives of all streets and areas around the new schemed road. It also held talks with all applicable authorities and with the Local Council. “We appreciate that whilst they would have preferred not to have the 2006 schemed road built in their area, families living in San Gwann Bosco are understanding that residents in other streets, including Dahla tas-Sienja Street and Il-MUSUEM Alley, have long been calling on the authorities to form this new connection, as confirmed by the Dingli Local Council’s decision earlier this week. Whilst we are compelled to remove the long-standing access difficulties faced by residents of these two streets, we are also determined to make sure that the construction of this new road will be turned into an opportunity for a better environment for residents in San Gwann Bosco Street as well,” Ing. Azzopardi said.

On Wednesday, Infrastructure Malta published copies of all permits and documents confirming that the road construction works it started on Monday are being carried out in accordance with applicable regulations, and that no works are being carried out illegally. These documents include a statement by the Planning Authority confirming that no development permits or notifications are required for the construction of schemed roads defined in the 2006 Local Plan, the Environment and Resources Authority’s nature permit for the uprooting of the three trees to make way for the new road, the Transport Malta permit for the road works themselves and the Dingli Local Council’s unanimous approval of the schemed road. The agency also referred to the Superintendence for Cultural Heritage’s public statement confirming that the works are being carried out with its approval and under its supervision, and that the remains of the Santa Duminka medieval chapel will not be threatened or affected by these works.

Infrastructure Malta also confirms that it has reached expropriation agreements with owners of the land where the road works are taking place. These written agreements signed by the owners of the lands where works have already started are in line with expropriation regulations. This means that the allegation that Infrastructure Malta carried out works in private property without owners’ permission is in fact a lie. These owners will be duly compensated in line with the valuations that have already been determined by the Lands Authority and communicated to them, as per applicable procedures. 
Last week the Environment and Planning Review Tribunal turned down a local organisation’s appeal against the Environment and Resources Authority’s permit for the uprooting of three trees in the site of the schemed street. In submissions to this Tribunal, the Environment and Resources Authority stated that the appellants did not have a juridical interest to make such an appeal. Furthermore, it reconfirmed its approval for the uprooting of the three trees, explaining that Infrastructure Malta was requested to plant 30 new trees in other nearby locations as an adequate compensation in line with applicable regulations. The tree-planting locations have already been defined by the same Authority.  

Residents in Il-MUSEUM Alley and other nearby areas in Dingli have long been calling for the formation of this schemed street to improve connectivity and to create a safer access to numerous residences, some of which are currently only accessible through a narrow lane that does not permit firefighting and other emergency vehicles to reach their homes.

Infrastructure Malta is planning to complete this new street in the next few months.