A scheme to promote investment in the restoration and maintenance of timber balconies, apertures, doors and wrought iron open balconies on building facades at lower Valletta is being launched by the Planning Authority (PA). 
The call is intended to further the aims of the previous Marsamxett Balcony Scheme. This call will go beyond balconies, focusing on creating better, more sustainable facades. 
Planning Minister Aaron Farrugia said that while work on environmental regulation, afforestation projects, and biodiversity protection in rural zones is ongoing, the ministry is also focusing on improving urban areas.

“Our urban areas should be better and greener, and our planning should take both sustainability and social realities into consideration”, he said.

European funds Parliamentary Secretary Stefan Zrinzo Azzopardi said the scheme will be re-issued with an investment of €300,000 in European funds. It will complement the rest of the regeneration works in the Marsamxett area, all of which are also being financed through European funds.

PA executive council chairman Martin Saliba said that some zones in Valletta, such as Marsamxell, hold unique historical value within the capital, and are still in the process of being regenerated. So more assistance was needed for new life to be breathed into them. 
Farrugia said the initiative goes hand-in-hand with other recently launched schemes, such as Green Your Home, a PA-financed scheme with an investment of €2 million to create green facades; as well as the Irrestawra Darek scheme, in which another €3 million will be invested, allowing applicants who were on a waiting list from previous years to benefit.

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