Moviment Graffitti in strong opposition to outrageous plans for a drive-in cinema on ODZ land in Marsascala  |  Moviment Graffitti Malta.
12/01/2021

Moviment Graffitti in strong opposition to outrageous plans for a drive-in cinema on ODZ land in Marsascala

Application has received over 500 objections in just a few days


Plans to build a drive-in cinema on agricultural land in Marsascala (PA/08833/20), outside the development zone are completely unjustifiable and should not be on the tables for consideration.


The application proposes the removal of soil from the land to make way for roughly 56 car spaces as well as an inflatable 16:8 metre screen, robbing Marsascala of some of its last precious remaining greenery.


In what has become a daily assault on rural and agricultural land, following a series of road-widening projects cutting across hectares of arable land and gobbling up the few remaining pieces of virgin land left on the island, more take-up of farmland for a private, commercial enterprise is totally unwarranted on every level. Such a massive footprint in ODZ land can never be justified, more so when considering that the site proposed for development also lies in close vicinity of the historic Torri Mamo and St. Gaetano Church. A drive-in cinema in close proximity to these two historic buildings would ruin their historic character and no doubt pose a threat to the preservation of their historic context.


A spokesperson for the group also raised concerns as to the suitability of such a project in the area, pointing out that it would lead to further environmental degradation, soil erosion and degradation, noise and light pollution, and pose a threat to the historic buildings in the area. Moreover, a drive-in cinema would attract a heavier flow of traffic, leading to an increase in fuel emissions and noise pollution, which would no doubt disturb the surrounding natural environment and habitats and completely change the rural character of the area.


The application has also sparked concerns that if approved it would set a precedent and lead to further commercial development of virgin land in the area. If a development permit is issued, there is a real possibility that the area will be gobbled up by future developments.


Moviment Graffitti also pointed out that if the project, which was most likely inspired by the present situation, fails to keep momentum once the pandemic is over, the damage done would be irreversible because there’s no bringing back the soil and farmland sacrificed for a seemingly useless enterprise. Such a development can easily be accommodated in other sites that are more suitable and that have already been commissioned for development.


The people’s anger is rightly justified. More take-up of virgin land in close vicinity to historic buildings for a drive-in cinema is totally unwarranted. Our country has already suffered enough loss of agricultural land at the hands of megalomaniac developers and arrogant government agencies. which continue to run roughshod over the public’s right to enjoyment of the natural environment and a good quality of life.


Moviment Graffitti urges the Planning Authority to listen to the anger of the people and do its job properly.


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Il-Moviment Graffitti jopponi bil-qawwa l-pjanijiet skandalużi għal drive-in cinema fuq art ODZ f’Wied il-Għajn


L-applikazzjoni rċeviet ’il fuq minn 500 oġġezzjoni fi ftit jiem


Il-pjanijiet biex jinbena drive-in cinema fuq art agrikola f’ODZ f’Wied il-Għajn (PA/08833/20) ma jistgħu qatt jiġu ġġustifikati u lanqas għandhom biss jiġu kkunsidrati mill-awtoritajiet.


L-applikazzjoni tipproponi li titneħħa l-ħamrija mill-art biex tagħmel post għal madwar 56 spazju għall-karozzi, kif ukoll għal skrin ta’ 16:8 metri, b’konsegwenza li Wied il-Għajn se jkompli jinsteraqlu aktar mill-ftit art rurali li fadallu.


F’dak li nistgħu ngħidu li sar attakk ta’ kuljum fuq l-art rurali u agrikola, wara serje ta’ proġetti ta’ twessiegħ tat-toroq li jgħaddu minn qalb meded ta’ art tar-raba’ u jibilgħu l-ftit biċċiet ta’ art verġni li fadal fuq dawn il-gżejjer, aktar teħid ta’ art agrikola għal proġett privat u kummerċjali huwa totalment inġustifikabbli fuq kull livell. Teħid ta’ art ODZ ta’ dan il-kobor qatt ma jista’ jiġi ġġustifikat, aktar u aktar meta wieħed iqis li s-sit propost għall-iżvilupp jinsab ukoll qrib ħafna t-Torri Mamo u l-Knisja ta’ San Gejtanu. Drive-in cinema fil-viċinanza ta’ dawn iż-żewġ binjiet ta’ valur storiku bla dubju se jeqred il-karattru storiku tagħhom u jhedded il-preservazzjoni tal-kuntest storiku tagħhom.


Kelliem għall-grupp qajjem ukoll tħassib dwar l-idoneità ta’ proġett bħal dan fiż-żona, bil-kelliem jisħaq li l-proġett se jwassal għal aktar degradazzjoni ambjentali, erożjoni u degradazzjoni tal-ħamrija, tniġġis mill-istorbju u mid-dawl, kif ukoll ir-riskju li jippreżenta fil-konfront tal-binjiet storiċi fiż-żona. Barra minn hekk, drive-in cinema se jiġġenera fluss aktar qawwi ta’ traffiku, b’żieda fl-emissjonijiet tal-karozzi u storbju, li bla dubju se jiddisturbaw l-ambjent naturali u l-ħabitats tal-madwar u kompletament jittrasformaw il-karattru rurali taż-żona.


L-applikazzjoni qajmet ukoll tħassib dwar iċ-ċans li jekk tiġi approvata jinħoloq preċedent li jwassal għal aktar żvilupp kummerċjali ta’ art verġni fiż-żona. Jekk jinħareġ permess għal żvilupp, ir-riskju li s-sit jispiċċa kommess għal aktar żviluppi fil-futur huwa ta’ min jikkunsidrah. Il-Moviment Graffitti rrimarka ukoll li jekk il-proġett, li wisq probabbli ġie ispirat mis-sitwazzjoni preżenti, ifalli wara li tgħaddi l-pandemija, il-ħsara li tkun saret tkun irreversibbli għax ma nistgħu qatt inġibu lura l-ħamrija u l-art agrikola li jkunu ġew issaggrifikati għal proġett li m’hawnx bżonnu. Żvilupp bħal dan jista’ wkoll faċilment isir f’siti oħra li huma aktar adegwati u li diġà ġew ikkummissjonati għall-iżvilupp.


Ir-rabja tan-nies hija waħda ġustifikata. Aktar teħid ta’ art verġni li tinsab qrib binjiet storiċi għal drive-in cinema ma tista’ qatt tiġi ġġustifikata. Pajjiżna ra biżżejjed serq ta’ art agrikola. In-nies xebgħu mill-aġir ta’ żviluppaturi megalomanijaċi u mill-arroganza tal-aġenziji tal-gvern li jum wara jum ikomplu jgħaddu bħal gaffa minn fuq id-dritt tal-pubbliku li jgawdi l-ambjent naturali u li jkollu kwalità ta’ ħajja diċenti.


Il-Moviment Graffitti jappella lill-Awtorità tal-Ippjanar biex tagħraf tisma’ r-rabja tan-nies u tagħmel xogħolha kif mistenni.