A site, in an outside development zone (ODZ) of Marsascala, which in June 2002 had been given a valid planning permit for the development of a beer garden, was today refused a renewal of the same permit by the MEPA board.
The Planning Directorate within MEPA argued that given that only site clearance works had been carried out on the site, following the granting of the permit 8 years ago, there was no firm commitment on site which compromised the current local planning policies. The Directorate continued to point out that, with the approval of the local plan 2006, the proposed development was now in conflict with a number of local planning policies. The Directorate concluded that this development on a site situated just outside the Special Area of Conservation (SAC) which gives full protection to the saline marshland at Il-Maghluq, but which itself is designated as an area of Ecological and Scientific Importance as well as an Area of High Landscape Value, will adversely affect the function of the valley which is an important water catchment area.
The permit which has a lifespan of 5 years gives an applicant the obligation to complete the development within an established timeframe. Prior to the termination of this period the applicant may request the Authority to consider renewing the planning permit for a further period of time.