MaltaToday, 09 April 2008 | Lija local council objects to ODZ factory


NEWS | Wednesday, 09 April 2008

Lija local council objects to ODZ factory

James Debono

The Lija council is objecting to an application for a new factory located on agricultural land in a buffer zone between Mosta and Lija.
This is the second planning objection made by the Lija council in the space of a week. PN mayor and candidate Ian Castaldi Paris, who is also contesting the controversial permit for a block of apartments next to the Lija Belveder tower, has promised to leave no stone unturned in defending the locality’s environment.
The proposed factory lies outside development schemes (ODZ) in Tal-Qantar, along Triq it-Torba and Triq il-Pantar, opposite a ceramics factory and a number of warehouses.
“We are objecting to this development because first and foremost no development should be allowed outside development zones. Secondly no development should be allowed on agriculture land and in the buffer zone between Mosta and Lija,” a letter sent by the council to MEPA states.
The council also expressed its disappointment that when it requested to see the relevant file it was told that this was not available.
Previously MEPA had twice refused applications for the construction of stores and workshops in the same area.
The case officer’s report for an application presented in 1993 states that if any development is allowed it will create a precedent for “others to develop this area for industrial use.” It also states that the Structure Plan precludes development in this area.
The local plan approved in 2006 describes the site as “an important rural area” which constitutes “a very important strategic open gap that separates and defines Lija from Attard, Mosta and Naxxar.”
It also states that MEPA’s goal should be that of protecting “this strategic open gap from development, thereby safeguarding the environmental quality of the area.”

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