KTP asks Government to protect industrial heritage in Marsa Power Station Site

In a statement published earlier today, the Kamra tal-Periti called on Government to identify and protect those buildings present within the Marsa Power Station Complex.

The Chamber referred to a recent conference organised by the Grand Harbour Regeneration Corporation (GHRC) during which “the importance of the regeneration of certain degraded areas, yet ironically parts of the Power Station were being demolished as the conference was under way.”

Reference was also made to projects submitted by final year students of the Faculty of the Built Environment in 2016 explored various alternatives for the regeneration of Marsa, including the Power Station site. “The Faculty is of the opinion that while the demolition of the power station would clear up a tract of land that could be used to accommodate a wide range of uses, both commercial and civic, the value of the building itself is important as industrial and architectural heritage, and there is no reason why it cannot be preserved, and used as a spur for the redevelopment of the surrounding area. This opinion is shared by the Kamra tal-Periti” it said in its statement.

The Kamra also called on the setting up of a joint committee composed of the PA, SCH and Heritage Malta “to identify those buildings and areas that merit preservation and sustainable regeneration”.

Commonwealth Day 2017: A peace-building Commonwealth

Message from the Commonwealth Architects Association President:

 

As I join other Commonwealth Organisations from fifty-one other countries at Westminster Abbey for the Commonwealth Day Service on the occasion of Commonwealth Day 2017 I wish to send my greetings to all Architects’ Organisations in the Commonwealth.

Commonwealth Day, held on the second Monday in March each year, is an opportunity for individuals, communities and organisations to promote the Commonwealth’s shared values of peace, democracy and equality, and to celebrate the association’s rich diversity.

The theme chosen for this year’s Commonwealth Day is that of ‘A peace-building Commonwealth’. This is appropriate and important when considering the ever increasing instability and uncertainty in the world. As announced by the Rt Hon Patricia Scotland, Commonwealth Secretary-General, “the Commonwealth family of nations in its rich diversity becomes an ever more-needed source of strength and hope for all its members”. ‘A peace-building Commonwealth’ is a natural follow-on from the 2016’s theme of ‘An Inclusive Commonwealth’, and reaffirms the Commonwealth Charter’s principle that international peace and security, sustainable economic growth and development and the rule of law are essential to the progress and prosperity of all mankind.

The Commonwealth Charter expresses the commitment of Member States to the development of free and democratic societies and the promotion of peace and prosperity to improve the lives of all peoples of the Commonwealth. The Charter also acknowledges the role of civil society in supporting the goals and values of the Commonwealth.

The 2016 Global Peace Index highlighted the continuing deterioration in the overall global levels of peace. Among the 163 countries mapped, it found a widening gap between the most
and the least peaceful. Of the index’s chosen indicators “the impact of terrorism” and “political instability” showed the sharpest decline. The report attributes the global deterioration to
conflicts in the Middle East and North Africa and the associated international repercussions. The number of refugees and displaced persons doubled between 2007 and 2015 to nearly 60
million, accounting for more than 10% of the population in nine countries.

The Commonwealth Association of Architects is one of more than 80 intergovernmental, professional and civil society organisations within the Commonwealth family that can proactively engage with, and contribute towards, the pursuit and strengthening of peace through their work. As architects, we have a special place in all this as through our designs and buildings we contribute to the well being of society and to the quality of life of our citizens. Quality designs and buildings contribute to a better society and thus to a better world and more importantly to a better and peaceful world.

Our designs come in different forms and at different times during the development of the urban fabric; either in the design of new buildings or renovation of buildings in existing towns and cities or in the design of new settlements following war or conflict. Spontaneous construction and a lack of strong civil governance are symptomatic of post-conflict cities. The role for architects and architecture in addressing these challenges is crucial.

Rapid and often unplanned urbanization continues unabated and this is aggravating the impacts of a range of natural and man-made disasters. Armed conflict and the use of explosive weapons in densely populated areas cause death and injury amongst civilians; earthquakes inflict unique levels of devastation in cities, as do severe storms and floods. But urban areas can also offer sanctuary for the majority of internally displaced people and refugees.

Urbanisation intersects with climate change, natural disasters, conflict and displacement. It is a critical lens through which to review national and international efforts to prevent, prepare for
and respond to crisis, conflict and disasters. Moreover, displacement, conflict and natural disasters are increasingly becoming an urban phenomena.

These issues generate new challenges and in order to address such issues a number of initiatives at an international level have emerged.

It is of interest to note that CAA has recently joined the Global Alliance for Urban Cities which is a global, multi-disciplinary and collaborative community of practice. It is a ‘network of networks’ working to prevent, prepare for and effectively respond to humanitarian crises in urban settings. Its first milestone for progress was the Habitat III held in October 2016.

The Alliance promotes a vision of inclusive, safe, resilient, and sustainable cities and towns (as laid out in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development) in which urban communities, their leaders and members have the power, capacities and resources to address the risks and reality of humanitarian crises, to mitigate crisis impacts on the most vulnerable, including the displaced, and to enable affected people to determine, with dignity, the course of their lives and their futures.

Let us hope that the theme of this day will be kept in our minds, not only throughout 2017, but also in years to come and that through our actions we will contribute to a peaceful Commonwealth and more importantly to a peaceful world.

 

Vincent Cassar
President

 

Commonwealth Day 2017: Message by Her Majesty The Queen, Head of the Commonwealth

Commonwealth Day 2017: Message by Commonwealth Secretary General

BRO announces new EPC Dwellings Assessors Course

The Building Regulation Office is inviting persons who with to attend these training courses to apply by downloading the form from the BRO website and submitting the application with proof of qualifications (original documents) to the

Building Regulation Office
Horn Works Ditch
Emvin Cremona Street
Floriana

Applications and payment for courses will be received from the 8th to the 22nd March 2017 on business days between 8am and 12pm.

The entry requirements for these courses are: a degree in architecture and civil engineer, or civil engineering, or building services, or mechanical, or electrical engineering conferred by the University of Malta, or an equivalent degree.

Further information may be obtained from bro@gov.mt or helpline 2292 7343 during office hours.

Digital submission of Third-Party Documentation to BRO

The Building Regulations Office has announced that as from Thursday 9th March 2017 all Third Party Documentation requested in LN 72/2013 is to be submitted to the Building Regulation Office in digitised format via e-mail to commencement.bro@gov.mt.  The permit number is to be inserted as the email subject to simplify the BRO’s internal processes.

The same email can be used to submit any queries or additional material.

The original bank guarantee should still reach the BRO in paper format. The processing of third party documents shall be processed only after the bank guarantee reaches the BRO.

For further information please refer to the Building Regulation Office’s website or call on 2292 7720.

 

KTP welcomes new Geoserver

The Planning Authority has recently launched a new online geographic information system (GIS) that allows users to access planning data in a fast, efficient and user-friendly manner, particular when compared with the previous system that had been in place for a number of years.


The new GeoServer provides significant functionality, and will also allow for the sharing of data gathered by other departments and authorities.


The Kamra tal-Periti congratulates the Planning Authority on the launch of its new portal, particularly in view of its speed and the upgraded graphic representation of data.


KTP Press Release – MEPA Demerger

ktplogoFollowing the press conference held on the 4th April 2016, wherein the Hon Dr Deborah Schembri announced the official demerger of MEPA into two separate Authorities, the Kamra tal-Periti issued a Press Release, dated April 5, 2016.

Download: Press Release 16/01

Perit Vincent Cassar is the new President of the Commonwealth Association of Architects (CAA)

At a ceremony held at Lahore, Pakistan on Friday, 4th March 2016, Perit Vincent Cassar took over as the next President of the Commonwealth Association of Architects (CAA) for the period 2016-2019. This followed a period of three years (2013-2016) as Senior Vice-President of the same Association to which post he was elected in 2013.

Perit Cassar succeeds Architect Rukshan Widyalankara of Sri Lanka who served as President from 2013-2016 and who will now sit on the CAA Council as the Immediate Past President.

The CAA, which had its first meeting in Malta in 1965 and thus celebrated its 50th anniversary last year, is made up of organizations that represent the body of architects in Member Countries of the Commonwealth. The local Kamra tal-Periti, of which Perit Cassar is a former President, is a full member of the CAA.

The CAA Council was present in Malta during CHOGM 2015 and took an active part in the events held during the meeting.

Perit Cassar, a graduate in Architecture and Civil Engineering from the University of Malta, joined the Public Service in 1973 as a Junior Architect and Civil Engineer with the then Public Works Department. In 1992, with the reorganization of the Public Works Department into the Works Division made up of a number of Departments, Perit Cassar was appointed as its first Director General, a position be actively occupied till 2003.

Following the Malta General Elections in April 2003 Perit Cassar was appointed as the Permanent Secretary within the Ministry for Youth and the Arts which portfolio included all aspects related to Youth, Sport, the Arts, Theatre, Music and Cultural Heritage. In February 2004 with the establishment of the Ministry for Urban Development and Roads, responsible for urban development and land transport, he assumed the responsibility for that Ministry as its Permanent Secretary.

Perit Cassar retired from Government service in June 2008 and since April 2013 holds the position of Chairman of the Malta Environment and Planning Authority.

Perit Cassar is a Fellow of the Institute of Civil Engineers (FICE) and a Fellow of the Institute of Health Estate Engineering Management (FIHEEM). He is a former President of the Rotary Club La Valette, former Chief Scout of the Scout Association of Malta and former President of the Kamra tal-Periti. He has also previously served as a member of the Executive Board of the Architects Council of Europe as its Treasurer and Co-ordinator for Thematic Area ‘Environment and Sustainability’ besides representing the Kamra tal-Periti in the European Council of Civil Engineers.

Commonwealth Architects Association

At Lahore the CAA held its last Council meeting for the period 2013-2016 and this was followed by the first meeting for the period 2016-2019. During this event the CAA, in conjunction with the Institute of Architects of Pakistan, announced the winners of the Robert Matthew Award. This Award which commemorates CAA’s first President, Sir Robert Matthew, recognizes also the innovative contributions to the development of architecture in the Commonwealth context. The Award is given to an architect or architectural office making the most out-standing contribution having particular relevance to the country or region in which the architect or architectural office operates. This year’s Award was shared jointly by Grimshaw Architects of the UK and Pervaiz Vandal and Associates of Pakistan.

The members of the CAA also had the opportunity to attend the Institute of Architects of Pakistan Expo (IAPEx2016). Perit Cassar, together with another member of the CAA Council, also attended a meeting with students of architecture from the various Schools of Architecture from around Pakistan and at which meeting they answered questions posed by the students.

DC 2015: KTP writes to Parliamentary Secretary

dc2015The Council of the Kamra tal-Periti has written to the Parliamentary Secretary for Planning and Simplification of Administrative Processes, Hon Dr Deborah Schembri, regarding administrative procedures following the implementation of DC2015. The Council will keep the members updated on the outcome of this correspondence.

Letter to Parliamentary Secretary.

No further government architects’ assessment of property prices

The Department of Inland Revenue will no longer send its architects to ensure that the declared purchase price of a property reflects its commercial value.

Finance Minister Edward Scicluna said a legal notice will be issued in the coming days.

He said the government architect would only be dispatched in exceptional cases, when the Inland Revenue Department suspected the declared selling price as being too low, amounting to tax fraud.

He said that under the new system the buyers may opt to appoint their own architect to estimate the property on a number of criteria like floor area ratio, locality, views and property type. His report would be attached to the contract of sale.

There was also the option of not appointing the architect at all, in which case the Department of Inland Revenue would still carry out its verifications to ensure that the declared price fell within a certain bracket.

The finance minister said that this measure will help to cut a lot of red tape.

The measure was announced in the Budget for this year. The Developers’ Association in a statement a few days ago complained that the measure had not yet come into force.

cross-posted from timesofmalta.com