The Malta Independent 11 August 2022, Thursday

Joseph Portelli's Qala ODZ pools sanctioned by PA

Marc Galdes Tuesday, 2 August 2022, 14:23 Last update: about 9 days ago

The Planning Authority approved the sanctioning of Joseph Portelli’s illegally built swimming pools in an ODZ, during a PA meeting earlier this morning.

The pools, which are located in an Outside Development Zone, were being built without any planning permits before being brought to a stop after activists and the locality’s local council raised uproar.

These works had already been mentioned by Moviment Graffiti and the Qala mayor, Paul Buttigieg, back in October as part of plans to construct a 164-apartment residential complex in Qala.


Moreover, before issuing the permit an Environmental Impact Assessment was never carried out even though the proposed development exceeds 30,000 square metres of land.  This is because Portelli split the development across a number of planning applications, thereby sidestepping the need for the assessment to be carried out.

The pool was not part of the original plans, but Portelli applied to sanction the works on the pool after authorities stepped in to stop him.

A similar occurrence happened a few weeks ago when the same Planning Commission, led by Martin Camilleri, approved another pool in an ODZ in Xaghra for a development by one of Portelli’s business partners.

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