Traffic got snarled in Ċirkewwa on Sunday with motorists reporting it took them about an hour to get past Għadira Bay, blaming the single-lane arrangement for south-bound traffic introduced by Infrastructure Malta.

Frustrations boiled over on social media with many saying their holiday had been spoilt and they would avoid returning from Gozo on a Sunday.

"What a disaster. From Ċirkewwa to Għadira one hour and counting. The future looks bright" a motorist commented on social media. Many others commented in a similar vein, also pointing out that this was not yet the summer.

A motorist explained on the Malta Roads Traffic Update page that while parking had been removed from alongside the two Northbound lanes at Għadira Bay, cars had to go all the way up to the roundabout near Marfa to head back down for a parking spot. That converged them with traffic coming from Ċirkewwa, adding pressure on the roundabout and the single lane down. 

Several commented that this situation was being witnessed every Sunday.

A motorist suggested on Times of Malta's Facebook page that Gozo Channel should consider a ferry service to Sa Maison on Sundays to ease the pressure on Ċirkewwa and Għadira. 

The road from Ċirkewwa to Mellieħa previously had two lanes but Infrastructure Malta has repeatedly defended its decision to reduce it to a single lane, saying it is a balance between safety and convenience and should not impact traffic from Gozo.

The road works were taken in hand in January last year and most works were completed a few days ago. Further works, including another layer of asphalt will be laid in the autumn, when more street furniture will be installed. 

However the situation on Sunday was complicated by part of the road being closed between the two roundabouts at Għadira beach, with cars being diverted halfway along the beach through a tight S bend onto the other side of the road. 

Slow traffic in Għadira Bay.Slow traffic in Għadira Bay.

The Gozo Tourism Association was among those who called on the authorities to seriously consider the traffic implications a single-lane road will cause. 

The shadow minister for transport got into the matter on Sunday, telling Transport Minister Aaron Farrugia in a Facebook post that the 'genius' who had come up with this road design should be 'thrown into the sea'.

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