“Land expropriation is an option” contrary to statements at Paceville master plan public consultation
Land expropriation of private property is an option in the Paceville master plan according to Planning Authority official Joseph Gauci, contrary to what PA executive chairperson Johann Buttigieg told residents at the public consultation meeting last Monday.
Mr Gauci told The Malta Independent that the “plan identified the implementation of a network of public open spaces as part of comprehensive redevelopment schemes” and should it encounter troubles in its development then ”land expropriation may be an option”.
Comprehensive redevelopment is when urban landscape is demolished before being rebuilt according to a plan by the government.
Mr Gauci was replying to questions as to whether the €151 million designated to land expropriation would involve private properties not owned by the developers.
At the PA public consultation, Mr Buttigieg assured residents and business owners that this would not be the case.
He first told an elderly resident, who raised concerns that the current master plan places a street directly through her home that expropriation would not take place on her property and that this would be changed in the review process.
He also said the same to a business owner who complained that the development of an open public space on Triq San Wistin would see his shop destroyed.
This also runs contrary to reports claiming that the Planning Authority has proposed to “pay” for expropriations on their site by granting them more floor space through a barter exchange.
LovinMalta, a popular website, also conducted a sponsored survey by the PA in order to gauge public perception. The survey also showed that land expropriation is a possibility with the term being mentioned twice.
This was not the first time the PA used the website to gain favour with the youth demographic. Only recently, they published a sponsored article highlighting the positives the project would provide with no mention of its negative impact.