Local residents, NGOs and several organisations banded together this morning to protest the proposed development of a 700-yacht marina in Marsaskala’s creek.
Protestors stood bearing signs and placards expressing their frustration at the controversial plans as Moviment Graffitti held a press conference demanding that authorities cancel the project, or face further protests.
“In the coming days and weeks, residents and organisations will be ramping up pressure for authorities to hear their concerns and withdraw these plans,” Movement Graffitti said in a statement.
Another protest has already been organised for 27th August.
“It is clear to us that the construction of the marina will suffocate Marsaskala through land reclamation, changes in road networks and further development of buildings, such as offices, toilets, showers and parking amenities.
“This will cause increased congestion and pollution in an already overdeveloped village, resulting in further damage to the characteristic fabric of Marsaskala,” the statement said.
A large number of frustrated residents and local council members showed up this morning, many coming with different reasons as to why the marina proposal should be shot down.
“The infrastructure required for the construction of a yacht marina poses a limit to residents’ use of marine resources in other sectors. It will inhibit bathing, fishing and seaside activities in the open sea, such as scuba diving and canoeing.
“A marina would radically and permanently transform the natural surroundings of Marsaskala making it a thoroughly unsustainable project,” the statement continued.
A tender for the construction of the marina was issued by Transport Malta earlier this week and was instantly met with outrage from residents and environmental activists.
The tender formed part of a local plan drafted 15 years ago but the construction of the project nowadays has been ridiculed as “senseless” and causing “immeasurable harm to our quality of life and environment”.
Environment Minister Aaron Farrugia spoke to Lovin Malta about the controversial project, stating that at the end of the day it was up to the government to make a decision.
“A government needs to decide at the end of the day. There is an element of ‘not in my backyard’ too,” Farrugia said.
The proposed marina is just one of many projects causing headaches for the residents of Marsaskala.
In June, a protest was held against an urban design contest launched by the Malta Tourism Authority aimed at regenerating the locality.
According to Moviment Graffitti, the design contest was a facade for mass-development plans that would forever ruin the character of our village.
“The yacht marina project was announced before the closing of the submission period for the MTA’s design contest. We are now more than ever convinced that this design contest launched in May is a total sham,” it said.
Local residents once again called for the cancellation of the design contest.
Tag someone from Marsaskala