Labour-led Kalkara council ‘strongly objects’ to marina extension

The Kalkara council objects to plans for 344-berth Kalkara Creek marina, reminding government of Ian Borg’s 2019 pledge that the marina would ‘not increase by 1cm’

Photomontage presented by Transport Malta of how the reorganised Kalkara Creek marina will look
Photomontage presented by Transport Malta of how the reorganised Kalkara Creek marina will look

The Labour-led Kalkara council is “strongly” objecting to plans for the installation of 334 boat moorings inside the locality’s creek.

In its objection to the plans by Transport Malta, the council also reminded government that back in 2019 the council had “been promised the marina will remain as it is”. 

Transport Malta wants to reorganise moorings in Kalkara Creek, claiming that it will “enhance harbour views”.

Back in October 2019 former Transport Minister Ian Borg had reacted to reports on the plans submitted by Transport Malta in MaltaToday by saying that the application was limited to a reorganisation of existing berths. He also assured Kalkara residents that the marina “will not be growing by even one centimetre”.

The position of the council is endorsed by all councillors, who oppose any extension of the yacht marina. 

The plans envisage berths over 35,000sq.m of space inside the creek along Triq Sally Port and Triq ix-Xatt. An existing marina with 173 berths already covers an area of 21,000sq.m in front of a boatyard below Villa Bighi. 

Transport Malta has not replied to MaltaToday when asked to state the number of existing boats berthed in Kalkara Creek in order to establish by how much the number boats in the area are set to increase. 

The local council made it clear that it is not objecting to the regulation of the “existing” moorings. 

“However, the application also includes the addition of further berths for a total of 334 berths all around the creek, together with a number of berths catering for large yachts,” the council said.

A plan of the project foresees 90 berths for smaller boats under 6m in length, 80 berths for boats which are between 6m and 8m long and 161 berths for yachts between 8m and 10m and a maximum width of 7m. 

The council warned that this application will increase the take up of more public spaces and open spaces around the coast of Kalkara. 

According to the council, the works as proposed, will definitely affect the area in terms of visual aspect, accessibility to public space and will also increase marine traffic which will increase sea pollution, to an area which is popularly used for social, cultural and recreational activities.

Moreover, the council contends that as proposed the marina development does not provide a long-term solution to the disorganised berthing in the area.  

“The increase in moorings will simply add to the already existing congestion for boat residents and boat owners to park in the area,” it said.  

Moreover, the project will drastically intensify the moorings in the area, making it even more difficult for boat owners to access their boats. This may well create the need for the addition of more pontoons in the future, leading to the "total occupation of the area”.  

The council also lamented the lack of public consultation with residents, the local council, and existing boat owners.

The council also warned that the addition of more berths will endanger the ecology of the sea, together with more air and water pollution, to the detriment of locals using the area for swimming activities.   

More than 250 objections have been presented in the past few days.

Objectors to the project include a large number of boat owners, fishing enthusiasts and Moviment Graffitti which had successfully stopped a similar project in Marsaskala last year.

But plans have been endorsed by both the Superintendence for Cultural Heritage and the Environment and Resources Authority.