University students’ projects exhibition at the A Station
The University of Malta’s Faculty for the Built Environment, in collaboration with Enemalta plc, is inviting the public to Marsa 2050, an exhibition of final year students’ projects demonstrating proposals for the regeneration of the inner Grand Harbour area.
The Exhibition is being held at the underground tunnels of the A Station of the Marsa Power Station. It is open to the public on Friday 15th July, 17:00 to 20:00, Saturday 16th and Sunday 17th July 09:00 to 13:00. This is also the first opportunity for the public to visit parts of the 1953 A Station, including the oldest turbine of the Marsa Power Station.
Marsa is synonymous with industrial harbour activities, with the Power Station, and with ship-building. It is closely associated with sports, and with horse-racing. It is unfortunately also associated with pollution, industrial decline and other socio-economic problems. At the same time, it is practically the gate through which all north-south traffic has to pass, and, in particular, through which all journeys to the airport or to the Harbour, have to traverse. Strategically, it is therefore optimally located. It has other assets, ranging from the archaelogical to built and industrial heritage, from the visual and functional relationship with the sea to proximity to educational and employment opportunities.
This is the theme that University of Malta final year students, reading for Master in
Architecture and Master in Engineering degrees, have addressed over this past nine months, as part of their Final Projects. The students have been invited to consider these questions:
- What could this Marsa/Inner Harbour Area look like in 2050?
- What modes of transport, and which routes, including across harbour links, could be catered for?
- What infrastructural systems would be required to make the zone “self-sufficient” in terms of water resources, in terms of waste management, in terms of integrated energy production and distribution?
- If the area could accommodate a balanced multi-use development for future residents, office users, industry, what social amenities would be required? How can green landscape be brought back into the area? Could the zone even produce food? What are the bio-diversity issues that can arise in this area?
- What sustainable redevelopment would be appropriate to take into account changes in sea-level?
These are obviously difficult but exciting questions. The students addressed these issues working in multi-disciplinary groups, producing, firstly, different strategic visions for the area. In a second stage, each student proposed and detailed a project that supported one of the formulated strategies. These projects are exhibited in the underground tunnels of the 1953 A Station within Enemalta plc’s Marsa Power Station complex.
The exhibition was inaugurated on Wednesday 13th July, during a presentation for representatives of different national authorities. Inġ. Fredrick Azzopardi, Enemalta plc Executive Chairman, thanked the Faculty for the Built Environment and the final year students for their creative participation in the public debate on the regeneration of the inner Grand Harbour area, including the Marsa Power Station site. He also commended the Enemalta employees who collaborated with the Faculty to prepare the A Station underground tunnels for the students’ exhibition.