Private beach at Bahar ic-Caghaq off the table

The Environment and Resources Authority have objected to the development of a private beach and a massive car park on public land on the Bahar ic-Caghaq coastline 

The private beach was being proposed on a stretch of the old Coast Road left redundant after the completion of the widened road at Bahar ic-Caghaq
The private beach was being proposed on a stretch of the old Coast Road left redundant after the completion of the widened road at Bahar ic-Caghaq

An application to develop a private beach and a massive car park on public land on the Bahar ic-Caghaq coastline was withdrawn on 8 January, exactly three years after it was presented back in 2016.

The private beach was being proposed on a stretch of the old Coast Road left redundant after the completion of the widened road at Bahar ic-Caghaq.

Plans for the development included a huge car park for 346 vehicles over two levels on both sides of the roundabout that lies on disturbed land, facing the sea. The project included beach facilities with two five-metre-high gazebos with an oriental design on top of the parking area.

In October 2017 the Malta Tourism Authority called on the Planning Authority to “consult” Projects Malta, the government arm responsible for so called public-private partnerships, on the project as the government was “trying to identify locations for the provision of facilities in currently non-accessible beaches and shoreline.”

The entity formed part of the portfolio of Konrad Mizzi, who resigned as tourism minister in December.

The project was proposed by Joseph Zammit, who happens to be a business partner of Paceville entrepreneur Frank Grima. Grima himself had stated back in 2016 in an interview with the Malta Business Review, that he had plans for a coastline project and a 7,000sq.m. “Vietnamese style resort” which would be “part beach, part restaurant and part soft entertainment area.”

The stretch of the old Coast Road was left redundant after the completion of the widening project and the re-alignment of the road in Bahar ic-Caghaq as approved by the Planning Authority in 2012.

In April 2016, a Transport Malta spokesperson had told MaltaToday that TM will be issuing a tender for works to return this particular redundant stretch of coast road to its “original state” by removing asphalt and other granular material in line with requirements set by the ERA.

However, when consulted by the PA in September 2017, TM did not object to Zammit’s application and called on the developers to conduct a Traffic Impact Assessment and a Road Safety Assessment.

The Environment and Resources Authority had objected to the project noting that the development permission for the new coast road was issued subject to the reinstatement of redundant areas. On this basis, it states that “the current state of the site shall not be used as a justification or pretext for its development.”

Since the application for the carpark and beach facilities was presented on public land, the project required the clearance of the Lands Authority.

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