Archive for August, 2007

Misleading pictures?

August 10, 2007

Ralph Cassar, local councillor (AD), Attard.

There is a move to relocate petrol stations outside residential areas. Instead of having a common, publicly available policy on the matter each case is examined and decided on a case by case basis, with the obvious discrepancies such a lack of policy brings. One such relocated petrol station, which ended up as a huge petrol-station-cum-carwash-cum-shop, is in Attard, on the road leading to Rabat, right in front of a residential area, defeating the whole scope of the exercise.

Before the permit was granted residents were shown an artist’s impression of the site with mature trees basically covering the area in front of the petrol station. The permit was granted, but surprise, surprise, the “Decision Notice” specifies that the area in front of the petrol station is to be planted with plants or shrubs not exceeding 0.5m in height. To add insult to injury it seems that the roundabout in front of the petrol station is not even fit for plants; the surface of the road on which it is built was barely scratched and a thin layer of soil was just shoved over it.

This may just be a little story about a site most people do not even know about, but it is a repetition of many a case where either development conditions change, are not enforced or are simply ignored. Does anyone remember the conditions for the Floriana car park? There was supposed to be a garden on the upper level – we are still stuck with a gaping hole. There are loads of other examples; maybe one day we can have a “before and after” exhibition with pictures.