Lo­cal coun­cil wants Spinola Palace to be in­cluded as his­tor­i­cal site in Paceville master­plan

Malta Independent - - NEWS - Gabriel Schem­bri

The coun­cil is only re­quest­ing the de­vo­lu­tion of the palace

St Ju­lian’s lo­cal coun­cil has sent a re­quest to the gov­ern­ment propos­ing that Spinola Palace is in­cluded in the his­toric sites ear­marked for preser­va­tion by the con­tro­ver­sial Paceville master­plan.

Apart from high-rise build­ings, land recla­ma­tion and even a tun­nel, the €300 mil­lion master­plan also in­cludes sites of his­tor­i­cal value. Al­bert But­tigieg, the Deputy Mayor, has pro­posed that the palace in Spinola is in­cluded in the list of these his­tor­i­cal sites.

Un­like meet­ings in the past re­gard­ing this master­plan, the lo­cal coun­cil mem­bers from both sides of the political spec­trum, agreed with Mr But­tigieg’s pro­posal and unan­i­mously sent a re­quest to the Par­lia­men­tary Sec­re­tary for Plan­ning Deb­o­rah Schem­bri and to the Prime Min­is­ter Joseph Mus­cat.

In the past, the Spinola Palace in St Ju­lian’s has served as a hos­pi­tal and as a school. Now, the lo­cal coun­cil is propos­ing that the ad­min­is­tra­tion of this palace be handed to the coun­cil so that it is run by the coun­cil. Speak­ing to The Malta In­de­pen­dent, Al­bert But­tigieg ex­plained that the land will still be gov­ern­ment’s prop­erty, as the coun­cil is only re­quest­ing the de­vo­lu­tion of the palace.

“We in­tend to trans­form the palace into a space for a day cen­tre, pub­lic li­brary, com­mu­nity hall and a cul­tural cen­tre. I pro­posed the idea be­cause I be­lieve the gov­ern­ment can make bet­ter use of this space,” he explains.

Meet­ings at the St Ju­lian’s lo­cal coun­cil did not al­ways end on a good note. When mem­bers were asked to take a vote on a mo­tion re­gard­ing the master­plan, Labour Party mem­bers stormed out of the meet­ing as the coun­cil op­posed the plan.

The mo­tion was en­dorsed by mayor Guido Dalli, deputy mayor Al­bert But­tigieg, and coun­cil­lors Clay­ton Luke Mula, Rita Dimech Portelli, Clay­ton Tanti Gre­go­raci and Edgar Mon­ta­naro.

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