Tribunal confirms Jerma enforcement, excludes full demolition

Developers have been given 30 days to present a method statement on minimising damage caused by the Jerma development

Developers have been given 30 days to present a method statement aimed at “minimising” damage caused by Jerma development to Marsaskala’s coastline.

While confirming the legality of an enforcement issued by the Planning Authority against developers in which it decried the state of abandonment of the Jerma site, the Environment and Planning Review Tribunal has modified the notice giving developers more lee-way in addressing the situation.

While the original enforcement notice had asked the developers “to take all the necessary steps to remove the damage” in 16 days, the tribunal has given  developers 30 days to  submit a method statement on works which are needed to “minimise the damage” caused by the derelict building and outline the necessary works to be carried out after the approval of the method statement.

In its decision, the tribunal insisted that due to the large size of the development, the extent of the damage, and its location on the coast, the original enforcement notice implementing the enforcement notice as originally issued veered on the impossible. 

It also noted that the enforcement was issued according to the law which gives the PA’s Executive Council the power to issue an enforcement notice whenever the appearance of any site is damaged by the structural condition or appearance of a building and to demand that owners take steps “to minimise” this damage.

The Tribunal rejected the argument that through the enforcement notice, the Authority was infringing on the property rights of the owners, but at the same time it also noted that the enforcement notice did not ask the developer to remove the development from the site. 

The enforcement had been revoked last year by the same tribunal.  But the Tribunal’s decision was later over turned by the law courts after an appeal presented by the Planning Authority.