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Five-storey old people’s home proposed at Buskett

The owners of a dilapidated hotel in Buskett have now applied to build an imposing five-storey high home for the elderly

james
James Debono
21 July 2017, 8:00am
Presently the built-up area occupies a 1,700 square metre footprint
Presently the built-up area occupies a 1,700 square metre footprint
The owners of a dilapidated hotel in Buskett have now applied to build an imposing five-storey high home for the elderly.

The same owners were already granted a controversial permit in 2010 to demolish the existing building and build a 58-room hotel on a slightly reduced footprint.

While presently the built-up area occupies a 1,700 square metre footprint and the approved hotel occupied 1,614 sq.m, the proposed old people’s home will occupy 2,225 sq.m.

The home will have two levels of underground parking for 104 cars. The overlying five storeys – a ground floor, three overlying floors and a receded floor – will include 122 rooms. 

It would also include a 213 sq.m chapel, a 220 sq.m dining area, a therapeutic pool and a 235 sq.m internal yard and a 700 sq.m terraced garden.

The home would have two levels of underground parking and the three overlying floors will include 122 rooms
The home would have two levels of underground parking and the three overlying floors will include 122 rooms
The 2010 permit for re-opening the hotel had been granted on condition it would never be turned into private residences, and that the structure would only be used for tourism-related purposes.

At the time, applicant Peter Borg objected when the Environmental Protection Directorate wanted to remove the term “multi-ownership” from the development description, arguing this clause would give him the option of selling rooms under timeshare agreements, in view of the “fickle and volatile” tourism industry.

It was eventually agreed that he would bind himself to manage the hotel as a single owner without subdividing any parts of it.

The apart-hotel, in the area known as Ta’ Sabbat, limits of Buskett, was constructed in the 1970s and the plans to redevelop it have been in the pipeline since 1997.

The case officer had then told the planning authoriy board there would be no significant impacts on two protected nature sites close by. So the board imposed a number of conditions restricting height and overall volume, to take the present footprint of 1,700 sq.m down to 1,614 sq.m once redeveloped, and three floors but with an increase in height of just one course.

The plans also included an underground car park for 22 cars at basement level along with a spa, gym and indoor pool.

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