After having the height of the East 14 tower in Gzira increased from the originally approved 16 to 21 storeys, developers have now applied to add a communication tower which will increase the tower’s height by a further nine metres.
The Gzira East 14 tower was originally approved in 2015 as a 65-metre high tower. Its height was increased to 84.3 metres in a successive application approved last year. The new communication tower will increase the height to 93.2 metres.
The original 16 storey tower was the first to be approved through a high rise policy approved in 2015.
A second application to add five storeys to the 16-storey was approved in August last year.
The five new floors made room for five new residential apartments.
On that occasion Din l-Art Helwa had expressed concern that at 16 storeys the building was already creating a negative visual impact on the area. But the PA’s Design Advisory Committee, noted “that the additional height will contribute to improve the proportion of the building.”
However the committee acknowledged that “the scale of the building has certainly made a presence in the skyline and long range views”. But it also deemed the architectural treatment as commendable and praised the “structural expression of cross bracing on the facade, which gives an interesting dynamic look”.
The Superintendence for Cultural Heritage also gave its blessing to the project, concluding that the project will not impact negatively on Valletta views.
The case officer report acknowledges that long distance views from Triq l-Assedju l-Kbir and Hastings at Valletta and the Sliema Ferries indicate that “the proposed tall building is visually prominent”.
However, it also noted that the proposed building integrates well with the urban form and skyline of the area, particularly when considering the already approved Metropolis Plaza project in Triq Testaferrata and the development potential of further high-rise buildings in Gzira.
The Gzira project is being proposed by ADMG Estates, owned by various shareholders, including Sonnet Investments, JPK Investments, Marius Cordina and Paul Darmanin.
The tower is being built on a triangular-shaped plot of land fronting Gzira road, Sliema road, and Triq ir-Rebħa, which housed the former United Garage building, 150 metres away from the Gzira parish church.