Central Link project: Superintendence warns against ‘undesirable’ heritage loss

Superintendence for Cultural Heritage has described the demolition of a cluster of vernacular structures around Attard’s St Paul’s chapel as part of the Central link project 'undesirable'

St Paul’s chapel
St Paul’s chapel

The demolition of a cluster of vernacular structures around Attard’s St Paul’s chapel as part of the Central link project has been described as “undesirable” by the Superintendence for Cultural Heritage.

In its latest submissions on the major road project, the heritage authority has requested more detailed images and drawings of the structures in question so it may “more conclusively assess their cultural heritage value”.

According to an Environmental Impact Assessment, the buildings, which include a tower-shaped structure, are constructed of “ashlar masonry”.

The Superintendence has demanded assurances that the works will not cause any damage to the chapel itself, which will not be impacted directly by the works.

The chapel dedicated to St Paul’s Shipwreck was originally built in 1500 and served as a parish church until 1616. The present structure dates back to 1729.

The authority has also drawn attention to the cultural value of underground tracts of the Wignacourt Aqueduct, which extend from Rabat to Attard, and is seeking assurances that these will be protected.

The works will run through an area known to be archaeologically sensitive, as evidenced by archaeological discoveries along the route.

These features include ancient tombs of high archaeological value, discovered in the Mriehel area and also a cluster of tombs in Attard located at Triq Hal Warda and Triq Xatbet l-Art. Other ancient tombs along the proposed route are recorded at the corner between Triq Nutar Debono and Triq Valletta and in the vicinity of Mount Carmel Hospital.

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