Din l-Art Helwa Press Release 28 June 2009Following the presentation of the new designs for Valletta’s Freedom Square, City Gate and the Opera House site, Din l-Art Helwa supports the concept put forward by Italian architect, Renzo Piano for these three sensitive areas so critical to the regeneration of the city.

‘With the entrance to Valletta still in a deplorable state and after more than 60 years of discussion, it is time to move forward’ says the organisation ‘and for the process of enhancing these key spaces within our World Heritage City to begin without delay. The initial designs show sensitivity to the symbolic ideal that will be retained with the preservation of cultural space within the Opera House ruins. It is also in consonance with Valletta’s fortified status’.

Din l-Art Helwa has some reservations about the height of the proposed Parliament buildings in Freedom Square, in particular as they appear to intrude upon the vision of the city from outside the city walls. It also said it would like to see the Government take the opportunity to commission a holistic design for the whole of the entrance to the City, fundamentally the area opposite Freedom Square stretching up to St. John’s Cavalier as well as the Bus Terminus area outside City Gate. Only in this way can the whole project be viewed in any future context.

‘Valletta has much to gain from this project’ concludes the organisation. ‘We look forward to its early implementation’.