The government is “listening and following” what people have to say about the construction of the Marsascala marina, Ian Borg said on Wednesday, insisting however that the marina was needed as more people were buying pleasure boats. 

Fielding questions from journalists, the Transport Minister said the government could deal with an increasing number of people purchasing boats by either stopping registrations, developing boat yards or constructing marinas.

The latter was deemed the most viable, he said, adding that according to the local plans, marinas can be developed in either Marsascala or Xemxija.

Video: Chris Sant Fournier

Borg added that the authorities were still open to having talks on the matter. 

He was reacting to concern over a Transport Malta call for tenders to construct a yacht marina in Marsascala.

The pre-qualification document published by TM included a site map that proposed sweeping away popular swimming zones and replacing them with pontoons.

Some 16,000 square metres of land reclamation are included in the drawing, as well as a requirement for dredging of up to four metres in certain areas of the bay.

The document also states that bidders must provide for a minimum of 700 berths in the marina, significantly increasing the number of vessels present in the bay. There are currently 500 moored boats.

The Marsascala local council has voted to oppose any marina project and has called on TM to withdraw the call for proposals.

Residents who spoke out about the project fear the marina will be a “death knell” for their enjoyment of the bay.

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