A unified vision for the Strait of Messina


By John

It is a triple strategy, the one implemented by the Ministry of Transport and Infrastructure. The first point is the creation of a stable connection between Sicily and Calabria but, just to dispel the “clichés” about the fact that the bridge runs the risk of being just a cathedral in the desert, the other two fundamental points are the inclusion of this great work in the general plan for transport and mobility in the integrated area of ​​the Stretto and the “contemporaneity” of the interventions, especially on the railway network, already contracted out, or planned, in the two regions concerned, with a total investment of tens and tens of billions of euros. “The bridge is not and will not be a cathedral in the desert but rather the icing on the cake of an infrastructure that will bring the integrated area of ​​the Strait back to the center of Euro-Mediterranean policies”, repeats Deputy Prime Minister Matteo Salvini.
And this is why the minister, at a time when he is speeding up all the procedures relating to the design and construction of the bridge, has also decided to restart that technical table which had been set up, albeit in a different context, by his predecessor, the former minister Enrico Giovannini. The resettlement of that “table”, yesterday at the University of Messina, is a precise signal from the Government, with indications also addressed to the two Regions and to the institutions and local authorities: “From now on – this is the message – we must reasoning in unity”.
And, therefore, the first measures cannot fail to be fares and single tickets for those who take the bus in Messina, or in Reggio and Villa, and for those who use hydrofoils or ships to go back and forth between the two shores. The unitary logic will have to lead to a much closer link between the urban plans for traffic and sustainable mobility of the Municipalities of the Strait, up to arriving – in the medium-term time horizon – at a single bi-regional decision-making body, of which they will have to the metropolitan mayors and the viability commissioners of the two capitals (but also of Villa San Giovanni) are leaving. And everything, in turn, must be in very close synergy with the interventions planned by other subjects, other than the local administrations, ie the regional councillorships, the Port System Authority, Anas and the State Railways. In this broad scenario, private carriers and local transport companies will also be involved.