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Pawlu Lia’s plans for a Valletta palazzo-office block conversion may have run into a brick wall, after the Planning Directorate reportedly recommended his proposal for disapproval, according to unconfirmed reports.

Sources told Lovin Malta that the case officer has been told by the PA to hold off any recommendation on the site.

This does not mean that the permit will not be approved, with several permits receiving the green light despite the PA’s opposition.

Lia, who is the lawyer for the Prime Minister and many other Labour Party figures, is looking to transform an 18th Century Palazzo in the heart of Valletta into a four-story office block.

The site has already seen an application approved in 2018 for a third-floor extension and a set-back fourth-floor extension.

However, an executable development permit was not issued after the project failed to meet the necessary compliance from the Commission for the Rights of Persons with Disability (CRPD).

Both Din L-Art Helwa and Flimkien Ghal-Ambjent Ahjar have their objection clear, with the block projected to stand imposingly above any other building on Old Bakery Street. Approving the project will also allow neighbouring sites to apply for a similar extension.

“We’ll be creating a dangerous precedent if we suddenly decided that Valletta’s skyline is not important and start adding floors to buildings,” Din L-Art Helwa Alex Torpiano previously told Lovin Malta.

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