Santa Lucija Underpass
The Santa Lucija Underpass project is a €20 million investment to continue improving the safety and efficiency of the principal route to several localities in the southern part of Malta.
This project, which was approved by the Planning Authority in September 2018, includes the excavation and construction of two tunnels beneath the Santa Lucija roundabout, to directly connect Santa Lucija Avenue (Addolorata Hill) with Tal-Barrani Road. Above the tunnels, the existing roundabout will be rebuilt in a new design that facilitates safer and quicker access to the residents of Santa Lucija, Paola and Tarxien. The project also includes the redesign and reconstruction of a nearby jogging track, the upgrading of the Tal-Barrani Road pedestrian subway to be also accessible to cyclists and to persons with disability, as well as a new cycle track connecting Santa Lucija to Marsa.
The two new two-lane, cut-and-cover tunnels will extend 90 metres beneath the existing roundabout, to connect the two carriageways of Santa Lucija Avenue with Tal-Barrani Road. Two approach ramps, extending over 130 metres each, will link the tunnel to the two roads. The new roundabout above the tunnel will prioritise safer access to Santa Lucija, Paola and Tarxien. It will also be connected to Santa Lucija Avenue and Tal-Barrani Road through four new slip roads.
The site of the existing jogging track needs to be excavated to build part of a 1.1 km twin walk-through underground culvert, which will extend from Tal-Barrani Road to reach another similar underground tunnel network being built beneath the new flyovers of the Marsa Junction Project. These tunnels will accommodate one of the country’s principal 132kV high voltage electricity network connections, linking the Delimara Power Station with the distribution centre at the site of the former Marsa Power Station.
Besides the new culverts for the replacement and reinforcement of these high voltage cables, along the same route Infrastructure Malta is also replacing a major underground potable water distribution pipeline. It is also laying several kilometres of underground cable ducts for Internet services, traffic management ICT systems and other telecommunication networks. A new rainwater reservoir and 2.7 kilometres of storm water pipes are also included in this project.
The existing Tal-Barrani Road pedestrian underpass (subway) connecting Tarxien and Santa Lucija will be refurbished and upgraded with new ramps, to be accessible to all. At the same time, the underpass will also be directly linked to the new jogging track, so that it can be safely reached by Tarxien residents as well. The new jogging track is being built in consultation with the Santa Lucija Local Council. Infrastructure Malta is also finalising plans for the development of a new promenade along It-Torri Street and Il-Prinjoli Street, overlooking Garnaw Valley. The promenade, which is also being implemented in collaboration with the Santa Lucija Local Council, will include a walkway, a segregated cycle track and several landscapad areas with trees and other plants.
The new cycle track at Santa Lucija Avenue, almost a kilometre long, will form part of a longer safe cycle route connecting Luqa, Santa Lucija, Tarxien, Paola and Marsa. The first stretch of this cycle track is currently being developed as part of the reconstruction of Luqa Road, next to Santa Lucija’s Garden of Serenity. Through the Santa Lucija tunnels project, Infrastructure Malta will extend this cycle track down the northbound carriageway of Santa Lucija Avenue, until it reaches Marsa, where other cycling facilities are being developed through the Marsa Junction Project.