The Malta Independent 15 November 2018, Thursday

Is-Suq tal-Belt (Valletta market): Doors open, public pours in

Joanna Demarco Saturday, 6 January 2018, 08:31 Last update: about 10 months ago

The Valletta Market, more commonly known as Is-Suq, has had thousands of members of the public walk through its doors since its opening last Wednesday, curious to see the renovation of the capital’s icon after the year-long work.

The space now includes a variety of restaurants, stalls and a small food market. The upper level of the market also plans to be used to host cultural events. The basement and ground level of the market were inspired by the Mercado di San Miguel in Madrid as well as the Boqueria market in Barcelona.

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The Arkadia Group invested €14 million euro in the regeneration after being granted a 65 year-long lease by Parliament, which had unanimously approved the project in 2016. The architect behind the design is Professor Marco Casamonti, whose signature also marks the San Lorenzo Market in Florence.

Photos Baskal Mallia

Commissioned in 1858 by Governor John Gaspard Le Marchant while Malta was under British rule, construction on the original structure begun in 1859 and was completed by 1861. The building was designed by Hector Zimelli, the superintendent of public works at the time, to house the open air market which took place by the Grand Master's Palace.

The market was victim to bombings during World War II and suffered significant damage, only to be redesigned as a shopping centre in 1983, before succumbing to disuse once again

Prime Minister Joseph Muscat is said to be inaugurating the project in the near future. 

 

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