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PR 08/21 | Periti Act to initiate modernisation of the profession

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On Friday, the Kamra tal-Periti, in collaboration with the Ministry for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects and SACES, organised a conference entitled The Renewal Agenda: Modernisation of the Profession. The event follows the unanimous approval by Parliament, earlier this year, of the new Periti Act: a historic milestone that marks the culmination of a 14 year-long wait.

The Council and the Ministry have now concluded the first tranche of subsidiary legislation necessary to bring several provisions of the act into force, and the transition from the old to the new Periti Act will begin in the coming weeks. This will initiate a long-awaited process of renewal of the profession, with far-reaching effects that will change the way it is structured, as well as the role of the Kamra, the way warrants are conferred, and new obligations on Periti.

 

 

Dr Ian Borg, Minister for Transport, Infrastructure and Capital Projects, outlined the importance of the new Periti Act, which was the result of intense hard work and perseverance, and how it will facilitate the modernisation of the profession for the benefit of the public.

“We introduced provisions that give a broader sense of legal certainty, accountability, security and transparency in the building and construction industry,” Minister Borg said.

He also emphasised how the new Act is underpinned by the value of striving for quality. “It was time to raise the bar even higher and through the amendments made in the new Act we are promising a more qualitative profession with the highest skilled people.”

The subsidiary legislation, which will be brought into effect in the coming weeks, will bring Malta in line with European Directives concerning the performance of the service of architects and civil engineers in Member States. One of the main benefits of this is that the local professional will become recognised on the same level as European counterparts.

Minister Borg concluded his address by announcing that his Ministry is in advanced talks with the Kamra to allocate funds to build a new digital platform whereby new procedures that will be in place in the coming months can be carried out efficiently and securely. He also pledged his commitment to continue supporting the Kamra and the profession to improve the quality of the built environment and meet the ambitious goals that Government has set regarding the environment and climate change, in achieving which periti will play a crucial role.

 

 

Perit Toni Bezzina, Opposition Spokesperson for Transport and Infrastructure, emphasised the bipartisan nature of the Parliamentary process leading to the approval of the new Periti Act. “We should be truly proud of the political maturity we have displayed in reaching this important milestone,” Bezzina remarked.

Bezzina pointed at the strengthening of the role of the Kamra tal-Periti which, for the past century, has given the highest level of service to the Maltese population. Bezzina went on to state that with the increased responsibility of the Kamra tal-Periti, it can no longer function on a voluntary basis.

“The Opposition recognises the new roles the Kamra was conferred in the law and will thus be ensuring that the Kamra has all the necessary resources to fulfil its new regulatory functions for the benefit of the profession itself, but also for the benefit of all Maltese citizens.”

 

 

In his welcome address, KTP President Perit Andre Pizzuto stated that the need for the renewal of the profession, the construction industry and Malta’s built environment has long been the focus of the Kamra, albeit largely ignored.

He welcomed the fact that political leaders are recognising the need to address the concerns that are adversely affecting quality of life, such as the erosion of the quality of our built environment, the loss of our cultural heritage, the need to introduce proper building and construction regulations, and the need to protect our environment.

Pizzuto explained that renewal is a process that requires a plan with a sequence of coordinated initiatives whose overarching objective keeps in focus the betterment of the profession, the industry and our built environment.

“The Kamra’s renewal agenda begins with the modernisation of the profession,” he remarked.

Pizzuto stated that the Kamra too needed to modernise, not just because of the legislative changes that are being brought about, but also to reflect the values that embody the profession today, while remaining mindful of its legacy.

To mark the beginning of the renewal process, Pizzuto unveiled the Kamra’s new brand identity.

“The Kamra’s new identity, featuring the three pillars of sustainability, reflects the social and cultural aspirations of today, and will serve as a constant reminder for the profession of its responsibility to promote sustainable development that strikes a balance between the economic, social and environmental needs of the country by harnessing and employing its creative and technical competences,” Pizzuto concluded.

 

 

Later in the conference, Pizzuto provided an in-depth review of the changes that will be brought into force with the first tranche of subsidiary legislation.

Presentations on the context that gave rise to the need for the new Act were given by Perit Simone Vella Lenicker, Past President KTP, Prof Alex Torpiano, Dean of the Faculty for the Built Environment, and Ms Lucienne Meilak, Director of the Policy Development and Programme Implementation Directorate at MTIP, who played a key role in the drafting and approval of the Act.

 

Perit Dr Amber Wismayer, Vice President and Hon. Secretary, KTP, and Perit Dr Jeanette Muñoz Abela, Council Member, KTP, also gave interventions on specific innovations of the Act.

 

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PR 07/21 | Perit Dr Jeanette Muñoz Abela elected to European Council of Civil Engineers Executive Board

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Perit Dr Jeanette Muñoz Abela was elected to the Executive Board of the European Council of Civil Engineers at the 73rd ECCE General Meeting held on 23rd October 2021.

Dr Muñoz Abela serves as council member of the Kamra tal-Periti (KTP) since 2016 where she acts as its representative on the European Council of Civil Engineers (ECCE), Fédération Européenne d’Associations Nationales d’Ingénieurs (FEANI) and Inġiniera Malta in their General Assemblies as well as a member of the Union Internationale des Architects (UIA) Committee “International Women in Architecture”.

She was also appointed as the Chair of the Permanent Committee on Engineering of the Kamra tal-Periti and is the national representative of the International Association of Bridge and Structural Engineering (IABSE).

Dr Muñoz Abela is also a lecturer at the University of Malta within the Faculty for the Built Environment and sits on the University Senate (2019-2021), the Faculty Board (2019 – to date) and the Doctoral Committee (2019 – to date).

The Kamra tal-Periti warmly congratulates Dr Jeanette Muñoz Abela on her achievement.

The Kamra tal-Periti would also like to congratulate Dipl. Ing Andreas Brandner on becoming the new president of the European Council of Civil Engineers while expressing thanks and appreciation to Ing. Aris Chatzidakis for his work during the last three years.

The new ECCE Executive Board is composed as follows:

Andreas Brandner President Austria
Aris Chatzidakis Immediate Past President Greece
Platonas Stylianou Vice President / President Elect Cyprus
Helena Endriksone Vice President / Treasurer Latvia
Paul Coughlan Executive Board Member U.K.
Jeanette Muñoz Abela Executive Board Member Malta
Olga Radulovic Executive Board Member Montenegro
Dimitar Natchev Executive Board Member Bulgaria
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PR 06/21 | Human decency before profit

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The construction industry has hit yet another low today should reports carried in the local press be confirmed regarding an as-yet unnamed contractor having unceremoniously dumped a seriously injured worker on the side of a deserted road.

As we discuss ambitious climate change targets, low carbon strategy, and the New Bauhaus Initiative, this incident is a stark reminder that some industry operators are yet to reach basic levels of responsible behaviour grounded in humanity and compassion.

Until contractors are required to possess a licence to operate, which among other things would ensure that they adhere to construction regulations and provide lawful employment, we will never make the quality leap we require. With a licensing regime finally in place, it would be expected that such a contractor would lose said licence and would be unable to operate again should such allegations be confirmed.

The Kamra tal-Periti is aware that the discussion on draft regulations on the licensing of contractors are scheduled to resume at BICC shortly, after having been on hold since May 2019. The Kamra shall be insisting that the new licensing regulations include provisions sanctioning or barring any contractors who were found to be responsible for serious injury or the loss of life of their workmen or neighbours through negligence prior to their coming into force.

 

The industry must send a strong signal to “cowboy” operators that all its main stakeholders shall adopt a zero-tolerance policy towards behaviour which is inhumane, exploitative, and negligent to its labour force.

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PR 05/21 | The revocation of warrants on criminal conviction and the role of the Kamra tal-Periti

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Following the reading of Magistrate Mifsud’s sentence regarding the role of Perit Roderick Camilleri and Perit Anthony Mangion in the tragic death of Miriam Pace, it is pertinent to inform the public about relevant aspects of the law and the role of the Kamra tal-Periti in this regard.

 

Suspension or Revocation of Warrants and Memberships

The most frequent question that the Kamra is receiving from media houses is whether the convicted periti are members of the Kamra and, if so, whether it intends suspending their membership. There are a number of points that need to be clarified for the benefit of the public on this point:

 

1. The Kamra is not an association, a club or a union for architects and civil engineers. It is set up by Law as a regulating body of the profession and to act as an official consultant to the State on matters related to the industry.

2. All members of the profession form part of the Kamra tal-Periti automatically, are subject to its disciplinary procedures, and are obliged to follow its directives and code of conduct.

3. Expulsion from the Kamra would entail expulsion from the profession. Such an expulsion can only happen following the suspension or revocation of a perit’s warrant in accordance with the law. It is indeed the Council’s role to investigate any misconduct of periti and to establish adequate disciplinary measures that may be necessary to protect the public and the reputation of the profession. With the passing of the new Periti Act, the Council will also have the power, after carrying out an investigation, to delegate the conduct of the disciplinary hearings to a Periti Professional Conduct Board.

4. Any disciplinary decision of the Council of the Kamra can be appealed before the Court of Appeal, and thus the Council acts as a quasi-judicial body. In this respect, the Council is obliged to adhere to the principles of natural justice enshrined in the Constitution. These include the right to a fair hearing. Failure to abide by these principles would invalidate any disciplinary decision of the Kamra tal-Periti on appeal.

5. To ensure a fair hearing, the Kamra cannot pronounce itself publicly on the merits of a case until its disciplinary proceedings are finalised. If it does, it would prejudice the relative conduct proceedings.

6. It is also pertinent to point out that a perit can lose his or her warrant in one of two ways:

  • Through a decision of the Council, and eventually of the Professional Conduct Board; or
  • Through a criminal conviction with a prison term of at least one year, even if suspended.

In the latter case, the revocation would be automatic and would not require a specific pronouncement on this point in the judgement.

The role of the Periti Warranting Board is to execute the Council’s or the Court’s decision, as applicable, and has no discretionary powers on these matters.

7. One of the principles of natural justice is non bis in idem; i.e., no legal action can be instituted twice for the same cause of action. In view of this, the Council was unable to proceed with its investigation given that the specific charges were not made known to the Kamra until today.

8. In March 2021, the Court had denied the Kamra’s request to be granted special access to the magisterial inquiry to extract any relevant information for its disciplinary investigation.

9. The Kamra cannot take any ulterior disciplinary measures on points already decided upon by the Criminal Court, as confirmed by its legal consultants and the Office of the Attorney General.

 

 

 

What happens next?

The two investigations which had been hitherto suspended due to the criminal proceedings, will be reopened by the Council to determine the following points:

  1. Establish whether the prosecution or the convicted parties will file an appeal against the judgement. If so, the Council will need to await its outcome and proceed accordingly;
  2. Analyse the charges and judgement to establish whether there are any disciplinary merits not covered by the criminal case, including breach of the code of conduct, breach of a directive of the Kamra, professional misconduct or negligence, and bringing the profession into disrepute.

 

Beyond the merits of the criminal and disciplinary proceedings, the testimony brought before the Criminal Court, particularly that of the Court-appointed experts, has exposed serious flaws within the regulation of the industry that need to be addressed in earnest and with competence. The Kamra shall also continue monitoring the criminal proceedings instituted against the contractor and the worker involved to determine whether they bring to the fore any further systemic failures within the existing chaotic regulatory framework governing the industry.

The Kamra has been campaigning on the need for reforms for several years, and has indeed published its own detailed proposals for reform in May 2019 in line with its legal and moral obligations to advise the State on how best to safeguard the public interest.

More recently, it launched a public consultation on its redraft of the infamous Legal Notice 136 of 2019, which was heavily criticised during the criminal proceedings, and shall shortly be publishing the final amended version having taken on board the feedback it received.

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PR 03/21 | KTP welcomes the passing of the Periti Act and BCA Act by Parliament

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The Kamra tal-Periti is deeply satisfied that after an interminable struggle lasting fourteen years and spanning five administrations, the law regulating the profession of periti has been unanimously approved in Parliament yesterday evening.

The new Periti Act will allow for a long-overdue modernisation of the profession and the strengthening of the Kamra’s role in regulating the profession.

One of the main the changes the new Act will bring about is the introduction of Certificates to Practise issued annually by the Kamra to warrant holders providing services to the public and therefore carrying liability for their services. The issuance of Certificates to Practise will be conditional to warrant holders possessing professional indemnity insurance or another form of adequate protective cover and minimum continuous professional development training. The possessors of the Certificate to Practise, whether in the private or public sector, will also be issued with an official professional stamp as a mark of recognition for their clients, and public and private institutions receiving official documentation from periti. This reform will serve to raise the bar and professionalism of warrant holders to the benefit of the wider public and the profession itself.

Another key change is the introduction of two lists within the warrant of Periti – the Perit Arkitett and Periti Inġiniera Ċivili. Apart from addressing infringement procedures opened by the European Commission against Malta about the previous Periti Act, this innovation creates a distinction between the professional qualification routes for architects and civil engineers and marks the beginning of a transition from generalists to specialists in various fields of practice. This distinction is expected to greatly benefit the quality of our built environment and the quality of construction.

Of great importance to the Kamra, of course, is the consolidation of the Kamra’s role as the regulator and sole representative body of periti in Malta. It also introduces the Periti Professional Conduct Board, a new body to which professional conduct cases can be delegated by the Council of the Kamra to improve its efficiency and guarantee a speedier due process for all parties concerned.

This Act was passed during the Kamra’s centenary year. It was indeed just over a hundred years ago, as the country was exiting another pandemic, that the Kamra was set up following a spate of building collapses. The Kamra has evolved over the past one hundred years but remains a widely trusted and respected institution that not only looks after the interests of the profession but also seeks to protect the common good in all its efforts.

With the passing of this Act, the Kamra is now in a position to gradually begin rolling out long-overdue reforms within the profession that depended on the new Periti Act. These reforms will bring the profession firmly into the 21st Century. It will also help begin to address the serious problems within the construction industry and our built environment.

 

The Kamra tal-Periti also strongly welcomes the concurrent passing of the Building and Construction Authority Act. While the Periti Act and the Kamra tal-Periti will serve to underpin the reform of the building and construction industry, this new authority will serve as its foundation.

Most of the concerns raised by the Kamra in recent weeks about the Bill have been addressed in Parliament through amendments brought forward by Government and Opposition.

There is still a significant amount of work to be done to align Malta’s building and construction industry with that of our European partners. However, the Kamra remains resolved to support Government in the drafting of regulations and their implementation to ensure that the public’s health and safety and quality of life are not only protected but enhanced.

 

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PR 09/20 | Kamra tal-Periti celebrates its centenary

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Today the Kamra tal-Periti celebrates a century of service to the profession and to society.

The foundations of the Kamra were laid amid the Sette Giugno uprisings of 1919 when, despite the turmoil brought about by the riots and the end of the Spanish flu pandemic, the new Governor, Field Marshall Herbert Charles Onslow Plumer brought into force the Architects’ Ordinance on the 25th July 1919. Less than a year later, on the 12th June 1920, he enacted Government Notice 202, which established the Chamber of Architects, now known as the Kamra tal-Periti.

As the sole recognised professional body representing architects and civil engineers in Malta, the Kamra’s  mission is to support members of the profession in achieving excellence in their practice of architecture and engineering in the interest of the community. It is also delegated with the duty of enquiring into any charge of professional misconduct or abuse made against any periti in connection with the exercise of their profession or with professional matters.

Over the years, the Kamra tal-Periti has established itself as the voice of the profession, and has taken on the role of promoting values of economic, social, cultural and environmental sustainability amongst its members, as well as promoting beauty in architecture and the built environment.

General Meeting of the Camera degli Architetti

As it traces its roots over the past century, the Kamra tal-Periti is now looking towards a future which is founded on a key set of principles: Quality, design, community, progress, identity, innovation, culture, sustainability. These are the elements that must shape our built environment, forging the very essence of the spaces we inhabit in the present, and for generations to come.

 

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PR 01/20 | High expectations of new Administration

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On the occasion of his recent election as Leader of the Partit Laburista, and his subsequent appointment as Prime Minister, the Council of the Kamra tal-Periti has written to the Honourable Robert Abela to congratulate him and commend him for his readiness to serve the nation at this most delicate moment in its history. The Council encouraged Dr Abela to tackle the major challenges of rebuilding the State’s institutions and the country’s good reputation, and of reuniting a sorely divided nation.

All sectors of society expect much of the incoming Prime Minister and the new Administration, including that they will not shirk from introducing the necessary modernising reforms in the State’s institutions, with procedures and regulations that are appropriate for a civilised, developed and respected nation.

The Council of the Kamra tal-Periti shares the high expectations from all professional bodies, constituted bodies and others that Dr Abela’s tenure will ensure a tangibly honest way of doing politics in Malta, at all levels, with people of integrity being entrusted with responsibility for our institutions. It is only in this way that all sectors of society can benefit equally.

The Kamra tal-Periti notes with satisfaction some potentially significant administrative changes announced last week, that appear to herald a very welcome departure from the indifference towards our environment, and a more sensitive approach to the several environmental and social issues which require urgent attention today and over the coming years.

Foremost amongst the new measures is the decision to place planning, environment and climate change within one portfolio under the responsibility of Minister Aaron Farrugia, in a bid to strengthen synergies and realign the balance between the oftentimes opposing priorities of the construction industry and the quality of our environment. The appointment of Minister Carmelo Abela within the Office of the Prime Minister with responsibility for sustainable development is also noteworthy, and hopefully announces a genuine commitment by the Prime Minister himself to place social and environmental sustainability high on the national agenda, at par with economic growth.

The clear separation between construction and planning is also an important step in the right direction. The Kamra tal-Periti has lobbied hard for several years for the two processes to be distinct and separate. Detailed discussions on this topic have been held over the past two years with Minister Ian Borg and Parliamentary Secretary Chris Agius. The convergence of views on this matter is therefore noted with satisfaction, and the Kamra augurs further and speedy progress on this matter.

For the last 100 years, the Kamra tal-Periti has been entrusted by the State with ensuring the progress and good standing of the profession. The Council is committed to ensure that high ethical standards are upheld by its members, and that its principles are promoted throughout the whole of the construction sector. It looks forward to a close collaboration with the new Administration to ensure the sustainability of the sector in tandem with the natural and cultural environment and to promote higher standards of quality and design in all matters related to the construction industry.

 

 

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PR 35/19 | Mediocrity and greed must be overcome

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The Kamra tal-Periti held its Annual General Meeting on the 6th December 2019 at the Catholic Institute in Floriana.

Perit Simone Vella Lenicker, President of the Kamra tal-Periti, described the past twelve months as “extraordinary”. The Council had set itself an ambitious set of targets for 2019, which it worked hard to achieve despite the crisis suffered by the profession and the industry over the summer months following the collapse of a number of buildings, the subsequent halt of all demolition and excavation works, and the ensuing hasty introduction of new regulations which did not address the core problems that characterise the industry.

She outlined that substantial progress had been made on the draft amendments to the Periti Act, and that the Kamra’s proposals for a new Building and Construction Regulation Framework had been positively received by all the industry stakeholders. She also referred to the various changes in the industry that the Kamra insisted upon over the past year, and which Government has committed to effect through a Letter of Commitment presented to the Kamra tal-Periti in August. The Council will continue to work on these aspects over the coming months with a view towards achieving the much needed legislative changes in the shortest time possible.

Perit Vella Lenicker acknowledged that the challenges of the past year had a serious impact on the profession. “The current political situation and the serious challenges which our industry will be facing in the coming months have thrown an even heavier shadow over us as individuals, as a profession and as an industry.” The Council is nevertheless committed, with the support of the profession, to strive “to achieve higher levels of service, and to pull the industry out of the throes of the mediocrity and greed which have engulfed it.

 

 

Scroll through gallery of AGM 2019

 

 

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PR 30/19 | Malta Chamber and Kamra tal-Periti agree to collaborate further

The Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry and the Kamra tal-Periti have signed a memorandum of understanding on Monday, with the aim to enhance collaboration between the two organisations.

By virtue of this agreement, the Malta Chamber and the Kamra tal-Periti have agreed to co-operate actively on matters of national economic policy of common interest to the business community and the architecture and civil engineering profession.  To this end, the parties may assist and provide each other with expertise in relevant areas.

Moreover the parties shall engage in a meaningful dialogue with a view to support each other on a policy level.

“The Memorandum of Understanding being signed with the Kamra tal-Periti, is the latest in a series of collaboration agreements the Malta Chamber has entered with strategic organisations, in a bid to provide members with a stronger network of support” said Malta Chamber President Perit Xuereb ahead of the signing.  “The agreement shall provide a formal environment within which the two organisations will be able to forge a strong relationship for the benefit of members from both sides.  I am keen to see the fruit of such a relationship”

Perit Simone Vella Lenicker, President of the Kamra tal-Periti, stated that this Agreement marks an important milestone in the history of the Kamra, which will be celebrating its centenary next June. She remarked that “The Kamra and the Malta Chamber are aligned on a number of levels, most importantly in terms of ethical standards and the drive to promote economic growth – in this sense we will be working closely to ensure that the industry in general, and specifically the profession, contribute towards the Maltese economy in a sustainable manner that is respectful of the nation’s social, economic and environmental needs.”

The agreement was signed by President Perit David Xuereb and Deputy President Ms Marisa Xuereb on behalf of the Malta Chamber and President Simone Vella Lenicker and Vice President & Treasurer Andre Pizzuto on behalf of the Kamra tal-Periti.

The Malta Chamber of Commerce, Enterprise and Industry is the independent voice of the private sector in Malta. Its principal mission is to actively represent companies from all economic sectors and ensure that entrepreneurs enjoy the best competitive environment and regulatory conditions possible for the conduct of business. The Chamber was set up in 1848, and is the longest established Social Partner in Malta. It is the only Employer organisation that is recognised by the Laws of Malta (Commercial Code Cap 13).

The Kamra tal-Periti traces its roots to the former Chamber of Architects which was established in 1920 to serve as a body for the self-regulation of one of the oldest established professions. The Kamra is somewhat unique amongst similar professional organisations in Malta since its regulatory remit and functions arise from specific Legislation (Subsidiary Legislation 390.01). The Kamra’s mission is to support members of the profession in achieving excellence in their practice of architecture and engineering in the interest of the community.

 

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PR 29/19 | Sustainable Communities – Winners of design competition announced

The winners of the first design competition organised by the Kamra tal-Periti were announced on Monday 7th October 2019. The competition was organised as part of the policy “Sustainable Communities: Housing for Tomorrow”, spearheaded by the Housing Authority and the Parliamentary Secretariat for Social Accommodation.

Following a call for applications, two NGOs were selected by the Specialised Housing Board to take forward their proposals. Mid-Dlam ghad-Dawl proposed a project which focuses on the provision of supportive housing and therapeutic services to prisoners and their families, with an aim to create a homely domestic and child-friendly environment which supports integration and which emulates real life scenarios. The Richmond Foundation’s project aims to offer support to homeless mothers with mental health problems and their children, through an integrative approach towards housing and service provision which will enable them to achieve independent living.

The NGOs were then allocated a dilapidated property each, one in Birgu and one in Bormla, and the Kamra tal-Periti launched the design competition, inviting professionals to put forward their proposals for the rehabilitation of these two buildings in line with the briefs of the two NGOs. Seven proposals were submitted for consideration by the jury, which was composed of Dr Rachael Marie Scicluna representing the Specialised Housing Programme Board, Ms Mariella Mendez Cutajar representing the Specialised Housing Programme Board, Perit Jacques Borg Barthet and Perit Edward Said representing the Kamra tal-Periti, Prof Alex Torpiano representing the Faculty for the Built Environment, Dr Andrea Dibben representing the Faculty for Social Wellbeing and Mr Caldon Mercieca representing Valletta Design Cluster.

The jury was very impressed with the high calibre and attention to detail that each project was given by all submissions which, in one way or another, engaged seriously with the core criteria of the competition in terms of innovation, conceptual strength and response to the brief. This made the selection process more laborious but also exciting.

The winning proposal for the Richmond Foundation project was titles “Home: An Active Threshold for Belonging” and was submitted by Local Office. The jury selected this project for the sense of home embedded in the overall design. Motherhood, daily domestic rituals, and children’s needs informed the core design. The depth of research and awareness to mental health considerations, the regard for process pre- and post-occupancy and the overall attention to social, functional and budgetary aspects were exemplary. The user-centred design was brought out through a sensitive interplay between the self and domestic daily rhythms, with architectural specificity. Overall, the design proposal demonstrated a strong social research basis, and a careful balance between the private individual spaces and those fulfilling the needs of the community was handled sensitively. The provision of sanitary facilities, the texture of materials and colour schemes within the separate apartments was also considered important, as was the emphasis on the collaborative workshop both during the design stage as well as during use.

Birgu: The Ordinary House” by openworkstudio was the winner for the project to be led by Mid-Dlam ghad-Dawl. The jury selected this project in view of how it transforms the ordinary into the extraordinary through architectural innovation, contemplation and in-depth research. Structural constraints were transformed into a creative and conceptually stimulating design, which breaks away from the traditional setting of supported accommodation. The domestic dimension was carefully choreographed along lines of visibility which maximise space but also offer a sense of privacy and homeliness. Additionally, the use of participatory parity was embedded in the process of building this home, where prisoners will have the possibility to construct their own furniture – a process which in itself instils hope and aspiration to a brighter future. By keeping the retrofitting of the building to a minimum, this project was able to focus on the intimate by opening up spaces that have the potential to heal.

During the award ceremony, Perit Simone Vella Lenicker, President of the Kamra tal-Periti, stressed the importance of design competitions as a means to select projects that are to be executed through public funds, since this process ensures the best quality of design. This first competition organised by the Kamra tal-Periti was particularly important because it will ensure that two vulerable groups within society will be able to benefit from dignified, safe and qualitative accommodation in the coming years, in line with the Kamra’s mission to ensure a quality built environment for the betterment of society.

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