The Malta Independent 19 June 2021, Saturday

Plans to replace Marsalforn seafront snack bar with seven-storey block submitted to PA

Albert Galea Monday, 31 May 2021, 08:06 Last update: about 19 days ago

Plans to replace a disused snack bar along the Marsalforn promenade with a seven-storey building have been submitted to the Planning Authority for consideration.

The planning application, filed earlier this year, proposes the demolition and reconstruction of a snack bar and the construction of three overlying apartments to an overall height of seven levels.

The exact address is what was St. Paul’s Snack Bar on Misrah Sir Michel’ Angelo Refalo in Marsalforn, which is then on the corner of Triq il-Port – which is the Marsalforn promenade.

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Marsalforn is one the areas which has been hardest hit by intensive development, with a number of blocks of apartments or flats cropping up in what was once a sleepy bayside hamlet, and the proposed development would be amongst the highest along the seafront.

The plans show that the building would rise to 21.6 metres, dwarfing the neighbouring snack bar and apartment building by three floors.

The footprint of the building itself is not large: it is a corner building, with an inside area of just over 40 square metres.

That however decreases by around 15 square metres from the second floor upwards, as part of the footprint is then owned by a third party.

The proposed three apartments are all one-bedroom flats, with one set out on the first floor, and another two split across the remaining floors.

Indeed, one apartment is split between the second and third floors, and another is split between the fourth and fifth floors.

The roof level will then also hold a small 5 or so square metre room.

The applicants are identified by the Planning Authority as being Rose Mary Formosa and Georgina Sultana, while the architect responsible for the plans is Cornelia Tabone.

Because the application was only submitted recently, there isn’t much in the way of public consultation just yet. 

Only the Environmental Health Directorate and the Malta Tourism Authority – who judge only the snack bar part of the application – have made their recommendation known, and they both said that they have no objection to the application.

Further consultation with different entities will likely take place, before a final recommendation will be drawn up by the Planning Authority’s case officer.

The application is one of many around Gozo, as concern about the scale and intensity of development on Malta’s sister island increases.

The islands’ mayors have all come together to speak out against the level of development that is taking over the island, as have major business lobbies such as The Malta Chamber of Commerce.

The Malta Independent has in recent weeks reported on much larger planning applications, including a complex of 125 apartments – split over three separate applications, common practice to avoid added scrutiny that major projects like these may require – on agricultural land in Sannat.

Similarly, earlier this month this newspaper reported how plans for a four-storey block of apartments on the outskirts of Xewkija in an alley with no vehicular access – even though the project is set to hold garage space for 40 cars – were also submitted.

This newsroom also found that in that case, nine apartments had already been sold by the developer, even though the planning process was nowhere reaching its conclusion, with the PA yet to make its recommendation on the project.

 

 

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