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Marsaskala stables and vet office set for approval

Eight stables, a paddock, a vet office and a storage office located in Marsaskala’s Munxar area are set for approval after gaining the favourable recommendation of the case officer

james
James Debono
17 February 2017, 1:11pm
The development is located in the same area which was earmarked for a tourist village in 1995
The development is located in the same area which was earmarked for a tourist village in 1995
Eight stables, a paddock, a vet office and a storage office located in Marsaskala’s Munxar area – which is designated for its ecological importance – are set for approval after gaining the favourable recommendation of the case officer.

The proposed project will include a built up footprint of 237 square metres.

The development, proposed by Nicholas Cassar, is being justified because the new structures will replace 95 sq.m. of old structures constructed before 1978 interspersed in the same area.

The development is located in the same area which was earmarked for a tourist village in 1995.

The proposed development consists of a two-storey building consisting of garage and veterinary office covering 60 sq.m. at higher floor level, with an underlying store at the lower floor level.

A massive 105 sq.m. timber panelled structure with its first five courses in stone will be built to house eight stables. 

The proposal includes two paddock areas of 36 sq.m. each, which will be enclosed in wooden fencing. 

To mitigate the visual impact the developers will be planting 32 indigenous trees, consisting of fir trees, Sandarac gum trees, and bay laurel and olive trees, to mitigate the visual impacts resulting from the development. 

The Environment and Resources Authority objected to the proposal, particularly in view of the relatively undeveloped rural character of the area in question, which is protected as an Area of High Landscape Value and an Area of Ecological Importance.

But the case officer argued that despite being located in a protected site the redevelopment of existing structures is allowed by the rural policy approved in 2014. The policy deems any development constructed before 1978 as legal.

Another recently proposed project named the South-End Agro-Tourism project, proposed by contractor Rennie Scicluna, met with disfavour from the Planning Authority in a screening letter issued in 2015. 

The PA has told the developer that his proposal is not in line with the Rural Policy and Design Guidance’s policy because it falls within a Level 2 Area of Ecological Importance, unless it can be demonstrated that the development will not compromise the site scheduling characteristics.

james
James Debono is MaltaToday's chief reporter on environment, planning and land use issues, ...
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