A bid to install a floating dock in the middle of a key tourism area in Malta, Sliema Creek, has had to be stopped by Transport Malta in the face of opposition from tourism businesses and the Gzira local council. According to The Times of Malta, the dock was intended to be used for repairing yachts and other craft.
Transport Malta recently allowed a 15-year concession for an unnamed private operator to locate a floating dock of 50sq m to undertake repairs on yachts and other craft up to 25m (82ft) in the middle of the creek. The concession was necessary to support the supply of power, fresh water and other facilities to the dock.
Permission for the dock was revoked within a week of the concession licence being issued because of the strong opposition to the plan. The area is already a key yacht repair, maintenance and refit area, as it is the location of the Manoel Island Yacht Yard which has facilities for handling yachts up to about 50m (164ft).
It appears that Transport Malta agreed to the concession without any consultation being carried out.
A source was quoted by The Times of Malta report, saying: “The request for proposals for a concession in such a prominent touristic place immediately raised the industry's eyebrows not only because of its location in the middle of Malta’s tourism hub but also as it was never ever discussed. It was evident that the move was aimed to accommodate some particular company.”