L-Avjazzjoni Avenue bridge deck is in place
On Monday night, Infrastructure Malta hoisted and set in position the 34-metre steel deck of the new footbridge over L-Avjazzjoni Avenue, between Luqa and Gudja.
This €2.3 million investment will facilitate safer pedestrian, public transport and cycling commutes to and from these localities and other important nearby locations, including the Malta International Airport and the Institute of Tourism Studies.
Infrastructure Malta’s contractors fabricated the bridge’s 43-tonne deck in a specialised metalworks factory in Venice during the last quarter of 2019, before shipping it to Hal Far for final assembly. On Monday night, the deck was slowly transported to the project site through Hal Far Road, where cranes lifted it in place on two concrete pillars, one on either side of L-Avjazzjoni Avenue’s five-lane dual carriageway.
The seven-metre pillars form part of two identical access and support buildings including helical concrete access ramps that will lead pedestrians and cyclists up to the gently-sloped bridge deck. In the centre of each spiral ramp structure, Infrastructure Malta is installing lifts to ensure that this infrastructure is accessible and comfortable to everyone, in line with guidelines established by the Commission for the Rights of Persons with Disability.
The new bridge will also link the two bus lay-bys (Avjazzjoni) at opposite sides of the road to provide safer access to public transport passengers and to the cycle lane and footpaths leading to the Airport and to other nearby localities.
This project, which may be part-financed by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union, is scheduled to be completed by summer. The new bridge is one of over six segregated pedestrian and cycling road crossings that Infrastructure Malta is implementing in Malta’s arterial road network in 2020 and 2021. Last week, the agency started lifting in place the first sections of another 105-metre footbridge at Blata l-Bajda, to connect several locations in Hamrun, Floriana and Marsa. This bridge will be open to road users by summer as well.
Infrastructure Malta will soon also start building a similar footbridge in Dom Mintoff Road, for safer walking and cycling routes between the Malta College of Arts, Science and Technology (MCAST)’s main campus, the residential and industrial zones of Corradino and the centre of Paola.
Other new segregated road crossings are being developed as part of ongoing or upcoming Infrastructure Malta road projects, such as the Central Link Project in Mriehel, Birkirkara, Balzan and Attard, and the Marsa Junction Project, between Paola and Marsa. The agency is planning more footbridges, subways, segregated cycle tracks and footpaths for quicker connections and reduced accident risks in other localities as well.