Fears of an Ottoman attack in 1669 led the Order of Saint John to initiate the construction of the Cottonera Lines, named in honor of Grand Master Nicolás Cotoner y de Oleza, back in August 1670. Designed by the Italian engineer Antonio Valperga, the fortifications were intended to house 40,000 people including their animals. This was the largest fortification project undertaken by the Knights in Malta, so much so that it came to an abrupt halt in 1680 due to lack of finances.
Our Saviour’s curtain, found between the demi-bastion of Saint Lawrence and the bastion of Our Saviour, is named after Kalkara’s hill which bears the same name. Our Saviour Gate, built during the reign of Grand Master Ramón Perellós y Rocafull (1715-22) is found here near Fort Salvatore (1724). A tunnel dug into the bastion served as the previous entrance to Kalkara.