Traffic lights have been installed on the proposed site of a planned flyover in Mrieħel, where vehicles cross over the main road into the industrial zone. 

The lights will "improve safety by creating a controlled vehicular crossing", roads agency Infrastructure Malta said.

It follows heavy traffic in the area that has led to Transport Malta enforcement officers controlling traffic in the morning. 

Asked whether the installation of the traffic lights meant flyover plans have been shelved or delayed, Infrastructure Malta was non-committal.

It said the intervention was temporary and “discussions with respective stakeholders on how best to deliver the Mrieħel Bypass project are ongoing". 

The flyover is earmarked for construction near a pedestrian footbridge and the government has said it would stop traffic from the south having to cross the busy bypass to enter the business district. 

However, environment activists, Qormi residents and farmers object because of the impact to some land nearby. 

The project would take three football pitches worth of agricultural land, amounting to 20 tumoli. It would also include the removal of a €1 million pedestrian footbridge installed two years ago. 

After objections, Infrastructure Minister Aaron Farrugia said he was willing to discuss plans to reduce the environmental damage caused by the planned Mrieħel flyover project.

However, several months ago Farrugia said he was due to announce four or five "controversial projects", indicating that the flyover could be one of them. 

Since then Finance Minister Clyde Caruana has said government departments will have to find savings, although it is not known if this would affect the prospects of the project.

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