What was once City Gate was reopened for pedestrians this morning, only days after the actual gate came crushing down in an operation that started on May 2.

The city's fourth gate was removed in preparation for works in line with Renzo Piano's design for the entrance to the City.

The works also include a new Parliament house and a theatre. Both are expected to open in the first quarter of 2013.

If all goes to plan, the Valletta entrance will not be closed again during the project, as workers will build the new gate and bridge while people use the area.

By the end of the year, the three bastion-like blocks that will form the new City Gate are expected to be in place. The bridge is being narrowed down to its original width.

The original gate, known as Porta San Giorgio, was built between 1566 and 1569. In 1632 it was replaced by another gate that consisted of a central archway with a smaller arch at each side.

In 1853 a third gate was built consisting of two central arches and two smaller ones.

The gate which was there up to last month, known by many as Putirjal, a corruption of the name Porta Reale was inaugurated in 1964.

Its doorway was widened to cope with a greater influx of people.

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