Hotel proposed on site of Dingli explosives depot

An application foresees the demolition of the existing licensed explosives factory in Dingli and its re-development into a resort and spa

A site of an abandoned explosives depot in Dingli now earmarked for a tourist resort and spa
A site of an abandoned explosives depot in Dingli now earmarked for a tourist resort and spa

An application presented on June 1 – two days before the general election – foresees the demolition of the existing licensed explosives factory in Dingli and its re-development into a resort and spa.

The development would involve the excavation of the site for accommodation of facilities.

The Pulvich Explosives Industries Ltd is no longer in use, and the present building includes 36 stores – each the size of a large garage.

The application was presented by La Toc Hotels Limited, a company formed in 2014 and owned by Dirk Hili, Bianca Anastasi and Veli Holdings. La Toc hotel has recently opened the La Folceneria hotel in Valletta.

A previous application on the same site, which is outside development zones, had been presented by the government in 2009 to replace the existing explosives factory with a fireworks factory depot.

The area is designated as one of ‘High Landscape Value’ and a buffer zone to an area of ecological importance.  

Although the development proposed is limited to the already developed site, development on the site may attract more traffic and urban development in a rural setting.

The government wanted to convert the former Pulvich Explosives Industries site in the area known as il-Qaws, to collect all explosives material related to the manufacture of fireworks under one roof.

The application was turned down in 2012 because of the site’s designation as a rural conservation area and for safety reasons

At that time the mayor of Dingli, Ian Borg (who is now minister responsible for planning and transport) had objected because the development was in a protected site, classified as a Natura 2000 site and a special area of conservation.

Election week applications

Another application presented on 1 June envisages the redevelopment of a beach concession, including the construction of swimming pool with ancillary facilities, a bar and cafeteria as an amenity to the Parkland Hotel, Qawra. The application was presented by Bongal Limited.

In Sliema, an application was presented on 2 June to redevelop Villino Zammit – a Grade 2 listed building – into a boutique tourist accommodation. The application envisages the demolition of an existing wall along Triq San Nikola to construct accommodation rooms as an extension to the proposed tourist accommodation.

In 2015 the Planning Authority had approved an application to restore the Grade 2 building as a residence, including minor alterations, construction of swimming pool, and demolition of a garage along Triq San Nikola. But the application specified that the facade along Triq San Nikola was to be retained.

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