Three councils, nine organisations and 10 residents have filed an appeal against db Group’s controversial City Centre project after raising money through a crowdfunding campaign.
The appeal was made possible through after €20,000 was collected from hundreds of donors.
They want to annul a Planning Authority decision to allow two 18- and 17-storey towers and a 12-storey hotel, to be built on the former ITS site.
The appellant say the public land in Pembroke is in a residential area and would have a “disastrous impact on important historical sites and areas of great natural sensitivity”.
Last month, the PA approved the project with a very narrow margin of four votes in favour and three against, including the Pembroke council representative.
In their appeal, the councils, organisations and residents outline several grounds for the revocation of the permit, including the project’s non-conformity with many planning policies, the defective and incomplete studies submitted by the developer and a “manipulated process” leading to an unfair planning board meeting and decision.
Legal actions undertaken following the 2018 approval of the project had ultimately led to the cancellation of that permit.
The strong public response to the recent crowdfunding campaign will once again enable the appellants to take the full range of possible legal actions aimed at the revocation of the DB permit, the group said.
Another appeal challenging the Environment and Resources Authority (ERA) decision to approve the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) of the db project is already underway.
The appellants thanked the public for “the strong support” shown in this “battle against greed” that has been waged for over four years.
“We commit ourselves to making every possible effort to stop big business and public authorities from running roughshod over the people’s will to protect its environment and quality of life,” they said.
The appeal was filed by the Pembroke, St Julian’s and Swieqi councils, ACT, Din l-Art Ħelwa, Flimkien għal Ambjent Aħjar, Friends of the Earth, Moviment Graffitti, Nature Trust, Rota, Sustainable Built Environment, The Archaeological Society and 10 Pembroke and Swieqi residents with the support of: BirdLife and Ramblers.
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