AS reported briefly in yesterday's Bulletin, the Balearic government has taken the first step to build the sa Mola tunnel which has been planned to channel traffic away from the waterfront area of the Port of Soller. The project, presented by the Balearic Public Works Minister, Mabel Cabrer, is now on public display. The scheme forms part of the highways agreement set up between regional and central government ministries. The venture encompasses the creation of a new two-lane highway, one going in each direction, of 2'274 metres in length, 1'329 of which will run through a tunnel. Traffic will be permitted to travel at 80 kph and construction work will necessitate the expropriation of 22'732 square metres of land. The works will be financed by central government to the tune of 21.7 million euros and will begin at some stage between the months of September and October this year. The project is one of great importance for Soller as it will take traffic away from the waterfront area in the Port, thus enabling the area to be pedestrianised. It will become a luxury port declared Cabrer. New construction will begin on the roadway that links Sóller with the Port area and the largest part of the road will run through the tunnel up as far as the sa Figuera roundabout, from where access can be gained to the Port. Another roundabout further on will enable traffic to reach the urban area on the coast. Mabel Cabrer also reported on other projects for highway development on the Island. In total, eleven tenders have been received for the construction of by-passes to service Inca and Llucmajor. Next week, a works study team will meet to examine the tenders. The Balearic minister envisages that both these projects will begin during the coming month of February. Cabrer also indicated that up until now, no official claims have been lodged against the planned Inca to Manacor dual carriageway. We will demonstrate that it is possible to build good road networks without causing a major disturbance to the environment.
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