Update – Gozo Tunnel Study raises more questions – Front Harsien ODZ
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Update – Front Harsien ODZ has said today that the geological study tender that has been issued by Transport Malta raises important questions.
The Front, in its statement said that it “hopes that the study is really intended for scientific evaluation of the safest and most feasible route for the proposed tunnel. It is unclear why Transport Malta has already selected a route for the proposed tunnel.”
Front Harsien ODZ has asked Transport Malta “to declare who selected this route and on what basis. We ask for the publication of all evidence-based documentation in this regard.”
“We also believe that the geological study should fall under the responsibility of the Environment and Resources Authority rather than Transport Malta,” stated Front Harsien ODZ.
Update – Statement from Transport Malta
In response to Front Harsien ODZ’s statement, Transport Malta said that “the public tender is another major step towards having the necessary information for the eventual conceptual design of the tunnel.”
“It is a prerequisite for any further steps. The studies will provide geological data which together with other inputs will serve as a baseline to develop the tunnel alignment and design.”
It added that, “Transport Malta’s foreign consultants indicated the borehole alignment for the tender. They based their indications on studies and the information available to date.”
“The consultants, Sintef are a research institute based in Scandinavia with over 60 years of experience. Transport Malta commissioned the institute to provide technical expert and advisory services for the Malta-Gozo tunnel project.”
Transport Malta stated that “Sintef has extensive experience with more than thirty years of sub-sea tunneling. They have also taken up advisory roles in various countries worldwide. Their tunneling experience in Norway puts them in the forefront at providing advisory services for large infrastructural projects and will definitely be of benefit for the cost effectiveness of the project.”
“Transport Malta issued a public tender. We are inviting local scientists and/or foreign consortia to partner in this process so that the project can move forward,” it said.