Works underway on Pietà square and Valletta Franciscan convent

Planning Authority funds works on the Madonna ta’ Fatima square in Pietà and the Franciscan Convent of St Mary of Jesus in Valletta

Planning Minister Aaron Farrugia
Planning Minister Aaron Farrugia

Works on Madonna ta’ Fatima square in Pietà’ and the Franciscan Convent of St Mary of Jesus in Valletta are underway with financial support from the Planning Authority (PA).

Environment and planning minister Aaron Farrugia said the works on the Pietá square received €220,000 in financial support from the PA, adding that the project would strengthen the urban environment for the benefit of the community.

"Through various initiatives, we are creating and encouraging more recreation and a healthier urban environment. For these projects, the Development Planning Fund is being tapped into to embellish the urban environment while incorporating more sustainable elements in its planning, as well as to restore our cultural heritage,” Farrugia said.

The Pietà project includes improved accessibility, a fountain and rainwater storage facility for irrigation, as well as a new lighting system.

The project was presented by the Pietà local council together with the Central regional council.

The Valletta convent dates back to the 16th century, when the Franciscan Friars Minor were given a piece of land in the area of ​​Porta del Monte (now Victoria Gate) to build a church and convent. The first stone of this building was laid in 1575. It is said that the façade of this building was made by the architect Ġlormu Cassar as was the custom in those days when Valletta was being built. The convent had not been kept in good state for a long time.

The PA approved the sum of over €43,000 for the replacement of these roofs by the Franciscan Friars.

Architect Vincent Cassar, Chairperson of the Development Planning Fund, said “the support we are giving to the structural and renovation works being carried as part of  these projects, will benefit the Maltese community and residents. We have an obligation not only to safeguard our built heritage but a responsibility to provide spaces where future communities can better integrate and build relationships through such projects.”