Mega-development in Naxxar should be rejected – Moviment Graffitti

Moviment Graffitti

The application for a proposed “mega-development” in Naxxar should be rejected, Moviment Graffitti said in a statement ahead of the Planning Board meeting on Thursday.

The application provides for the development consists of several towers of 13 storeys each, comprising of 113 residential units as well as a commercial development on the former trade fair grounds in Naxxar. The project has been recommended for approval, with the NGO lambasting the recommendation as a “total failure of our planning system and the authorities administering it”.

The Planning Authority is set to decide on the application on Thursday.

“This monstrosity is most clearly out of proportion with its surroundings, will rob residents and visitors of much needed open spaces, and will also lead to an immediate and steep decline in the quality of life,” the NGO stated.

Moviment Graffitti noted that the area within which the development is proposed allows for up to four storeys, meaning that the project would be three times higher than its surroundings. It added that the increase in the residential and commercial activity will also create unsustainable pressures on the locality’s infrastructure.

The project has been met with resistance by residents who have strongly objected while the Social Impact Assessment has clearly evidenced the overwhelming opposition to this highly intensive development.

“It is exasperating that the PA, by recommending this insanity for approval, seems to be totally ignoring the voices and opinions of the thousands that will be impacted, and instead taking into account only the ambitions of the developers,” Moviment Graffitti remarked.

Last month the NGO unveiled a document containing 134 proposals on planning and construction in which it was proposed a moratorium on large-scale projects until both national and localised Masterplans are enacted.

Moviment Graffitti explained that there should be the identification of detailed boundaries or specific areas where such projects can take place, together with an assessment of a maximum capacity limit within these areas. Developers should be made to pay most costs related to the upgrading of services. The NGO also proposed that Local Councils affected by major private projects would be empowered to call a referendum among its residents when faced with a large-scale project.