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12 maltatoday | SUNDAY • 1 MAY 2022 NEWS Thank you... for having bought this newspaper The good news is that we're not raising the price of our newspaper We know times are still hard, but we have pledged to keep giving our readers quality news they deserve, without making you pay more for it. So thank you, for making it your MaltaToday Support your favourite newspaper with a special offer on online PDF subscriptions. Visit or scan the QR code Subscriptions can be done online on Same-day delivery at €1 for orders up to 5 newspapers per address. Subscribe from €1.15 a week Same-day print delivery from Miller Distributors mt JAMES DEBONO NEW plans for Arkadia's Valletta food court's new canopy design have been presented, as the company attempts to reverse a planning enforce- ment by entering into talks with the heritage au- thorities. The Suq tal-Belt's canopy was hit by an en- forcement order from the Planning Authority in October 2019. The PA said the "permanent" structure had been built without a permit and was obstruct- ing the façade of the scheduled building of the old Valletta market. By filing an appeal to the PA's environment and planning review tribunal (EPRT), Ark- adia effectively delayed the removal of the tent structure, which remains in place now for two years – but the owners are currently subject to a daily fine of €50. Arkadia had also requested in November 2021 that the appeal is deferred until the PA decides on the new canopy application, "following dis- cussions with the Superintendence for Cultural Heritage and the Planning Authority". The case was deferred to 22 March 2022, when the architect informed the tribunal that the application had been presented, and the ap- peal was deferred yet again to 9 June. The new plans foresee the removal of the ex- isting shading canopies, and the installation of new canopies with a retractable, beige canvas roof and a different design. The application is also accompanied by pho- tomontages of the proposed tent structures. The PA's enforcement was issued against Arkadia Marketing Limited, which operates the food court in the Suq tal-Belt, and the Commis- sioner of Lands. Arkadia argues that the awnings are not ille- gal but covered by a development notification permit issued by the PA in 2018. It said its orig- inal canopy had to be replaced due to deteri- oration and that it was a hazard to the public. To address these flaws the new structures were installed with additional steel frames to retain the canvas covering, while still respecting the dimensions of the original permit. The 2018 permit had a validity of only one year and does not apply to the structures erect- ed in 2019. The DNO permit issued in 2018 also allowed for a "one-time installation of a perma- nent canopy" within the said area and the per- mit has since expired, a PA spokesperson had told MaltaToday before the filing of the appeal. Suq tal-Belt delays enforcement as Arkadia present new canopy plans Top: the proposed design for the new canopy, which wil be entirely retractable. Inset: the orginal canopy under enforcement order. But Arkadia's appeal against the enforcement prevents it from being actually effected, allowing the company to buy time at the rate of a daily €50 fine

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