An application has been filed to build a petrol station opposite the Sant’Antnin waste treatment plant on the Marsascala bypass.

The proposal includes the construction of a back office, a shop, two garages and VRT and car services facilities in an open undeveloped field on Sant’Antnin Road, Marsascala.

According to the project description report, commissioned by applicant, Patrick Guntrip, the petrol station would not “create additional traffic on the bypass since the vehicles stopping by the service station will be those already using the network”.

Petrol stations did not generate a significant amount of new trips for most drivers used them because they were already on the main road and the station’s location was convenient for car refuelling and servicing, the report says.

Since the automatic 24-hour refuelling service was introduced, drivers could use a petrol station at any time, especially when they were already on their way to or leaving Marsascala, it adds. However, a small number of vehicles “will be attracted” when refuelling is required.

The report points out that traffic could be generated because of the onsite shop and the garage but the effect could be “negligible”.

The petrol station would not ‘create additional traffic on the bypass’

The existing site consists of an abandoned agricultural land, trapezoidal in shape with an area of about 1,365 square metres. There are a number of small structures on the area.

Opposite, is an Enemalta substation, the former sewage treatment plant of the Water Services Corporation, the Sant’Antnin waste treatment plant and the Family Park.

The development will be one-storey high and have four fuel pumps, an LPG tank and four carwash machines.

The surrounding areas consist mostly of agricultural land and the closest residential area is a few hundreds of metres away.

Earlier this year, the planning authority drafted a proposal for fuel stations in outside development zones suggesting that these should not exceed three tumoli or 3,000 square metres.

The proposal had not yet been accepted by the government, Mepa chief executive officer Johann Buttigieg told a parliamentary committee recently.

The planning authority said that, through the policy, a balance had been found by relocating fuel stations from urban areas to ODZ while new facilities would be located in industrial areas. No fuel stations would be allowed in Natura 2000 sites and other sensitive areas.

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