Regional Road upgrade completed
Infrastructure Malta completed a major upgrade of Regional Road and seven of its junctions, to continue improving efficiency and road safety along the principal north-south route of Malta.
This investment comprised the rebuilding of Regional Road between the Tal-Qroqq Tunnels and the Santa Venera Tunnels, the addition of two new lanes along part of this four-lane road and the re-alignment of seven of its junctions. The agency also reconstructed the 1970s Msida Valley Road Bridge half way through this route and introduced a safer system of central reservation crash barriers to reduce risks of cross median collisions and other accident consequences.
The 1.1 kilometres of new lanes are improving the safety of a number of junctions along this route, whilst increasing its efficiency by reducing waiting times at its merging lanes and exits. The bridge spanning Regional Road’s carriageways over Msida Valley Road was replaced with a new, wider structure to improve the alignment and the superelevation of this part of the road for lower accident risks.
Figures for the last 10 years confirm that this part of Regional Road was a major accident black spot, with an average of one collision a week. Forty percent of these accidents caused serious injuries to road users. Many of them took place at the T-junction connecting Msida Valley Road, Old Railway Track (Birkirkara) and Kappillan Mifsud Road (Santa Venera) to the northbound carriageway of Regional Road. Infrastructure Malta transformed this junction into an uninterrupted lane linked to the new northbound lane of Regional Road, to reduce collision risks and travel times. Road users no longer need to shift from one lane to another to enter Regional Road from this junction.
Further up the northbound carriageway of this road, the additional lane is reducing delays at the critical Regional Road exit towards the Birkirkara Bypass (Dun Karm Road), the University of Malta and Mater Dei Hospital.
In the opposite direction, the second new lane of Regional Road is improving vehicle flows along the slip road connecting the Tal-Qroqq (skatepark) roundabout with Regional Road’s southbound carriageway by replacing the pre-existing short merging lane with an uninterrupted lane towards Santa Venera. The same lane is also giving road users safer access to the Regional Road exit ramp towards Old Railway Track and Il-Kappillan Mifsud Road, which converge at the Birkirkara-Santa Venera roundabout bridge.
Through this project, Infrastructure Malta completed the reconstruction of another part of the principal north-south route of the Trans-European Transport (TEN-T) network in Malta. Regional Road is in the heart of this route, with the Coast Road (St Paul’s Bay, Bahar ic-Caghaq), St Andrew’s Road (Swieqi, Pembroke), Mikiel Anton Vassalli Road (St Julian’s), the Ta’ Giorni tunnels, the Kappara overpass and the Tal-Qroqq tunnels (Msida) to the north, and the Santa Venera tunnels, the Marsa-Hamrun Bypass, December 13th Road, Aldo Moro Road, the Marsa Junction, Santa Lucija Avenue, the Santa Lucija roundabout and Tal-Barrani Road (Tarxien, Bir id-Deheb) to the south. The Regional Road Project continues to upgrade this road corridor by reducing travel times, increasing road safety and improving air quality in nearby areas.
Infrastructure Malta is currently investing in other parts of this route, including the seven flyovers of the Marsa Junction Project and the Santa Lucija Underpass Project. It will soon be implementing other projects to extend this improvement to the remaining sections, including the rebuilding of St Andrew’s Road as part of the Pembroke-St Julian’s Connections Project, the two new flyovers of the Msida Creek Project and the refurbishment of the three existing road tunnels along the route.
Other ongoing and upcoming arterial road upgrades include the reconstruction of Buqana Road, Mtarfa, Qormi Road and St Thomas Road, between Luqa and Qormi, and Qormi Road, Qormi. Infrastructure Malta will soon also start the Central Link Project to rebuild Mdina Road and other nearby arterial roads from Mriehel to Ta’ Qali, to alleviate long-standing congestion difficulties in Birkirkara, Balzan and Attard.