Swatar

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Swatar
Is-Swatar and Tas-Swatar
Local councils of Birkirkara and Msida; Swatar Administrative Committee
Birkirkara-residencial-area.jpg
View of the hamlet of Swatar
Coordinates: 35°53′55.6″N 14°28′35.73″E / 35.898778°N 14.4765917°E / 35.898778; 14.4765917Coordinates: 35°53′55.6″N 14°28′35.73″E / 35.898778°N 14.4765917°E / 35.898778; 14.4765917
Country  Malta
District Northern Harbour District
Founded 2006
Borders Tal-Qattus and Ta' Paris (Birkirkara), and Tal-Qroqq (Msida)
Population (2017)
 • Total 5,100
Time zone UTC+1 (CET)
 • Summer (DST) UTC+2 (CEST)
Postal code BKR and MSD
ISO 3166 code MT
Patron Saint San Gorg Preca
Day of Patron Saint feast May 9th
Website Swatar

Swatar, colloquially known as Is-Swatar and Tas-Swatar, is a hamlet in Malta situated in Birkirkara and in Msida. In 2015 it had a population of over 5,100 people, with around 1,600 families. Swatar has its own separate parish since 8 November 2006, by an official decree issued by the Bishop of Malta Monsignor Paul Cremona.[1][2][3]

Swatar is located on a hill. It is in the proximity to Mater Dei Hospital and the University of Malta which are found in an area in Msida known as Tal-Qroqq.[4] Swatar is also found next to Tal-Qattus and Ta' Paris areas in Birkirkara. The hamlet has been consisting of mainly farmlands until most of the 20th century.[5]

Some buildings, such as farmhouses, were built during the Order of St. John. Most of the buildings today were built sometimes after World War II and consist of modern neighborhoods.[5] Some significant economic activity takes place on the side of Birkirkara Bypass.[6]

Governance[edit]

Swatar remains an integral part under the Birkirkara and Msida Local Councils,[7] however it has its own administration being the Swatar Administrative Committee.[8][9] The Labour Party generally gains the popular vote.[10]

History[edit]

Swatar has been an agricultural land since the Arab period in Malta when it was not considered as a reference area on its own. During the Order of St. John the area remained largely uninhabited but the areas in the surroundings were both agricultural and hunting zones. The area started to be populated mostly after World War II when several families started to settle out of the cities. The Government of Malta has given financial advantages to acquire and build land in the 1970s and 1980s for families who moved to live there; with similar schemes around Malta.[11]

Swatar has had its own spiritual service, by the Roman Catholic Church, since 1989, and became a separate parish in 2008.[12][13] The current parish priest is Canon Carmel Busuttil.[14] Previously before becoming parish priest, he took responsibility to see built the community's parish church which was officiated sometimes in 2004. The patron of the church is Saint George Preca, a Maltese.[11]

The area has its own social gathering groups such as the Society of Christian Doctrine (M.U.S.E.U.M),[15] the Żgħażagħ Azzjoni Kattolika (ŻAK) and a relative new pastoral center.[16]

The pastoral center includes the parish church, a community gathering garden, a car park and a farmhouse. The farmhouse host three main community gathering being; the Adoration Chapel,[1] the house of the parish priest and the gathering place of the ŻAK. The farmhouse is a vernacular building and is one of the oldest buildings in Swatar. It has gone under different adaptive reuse and structural changes.[17] The carpark is not for general public use.[18]

There is a public garden, named Swatar Garden, which is situated at Balliju Guttenberg Street. The garden is equipped with European standard facilities such as; a 5-a-side football ground, energy efficient lightning and safety and security measures.[19]

Swatar hosts a relative large number of companies, banks and other investments, which are mainly situated overlooking the Mater Dei Hospital on Birkirkara Bypass.[20][21] Banks include the headquarters of the APS Bank[22][23][24] and the HSBC Bank Call Centre.[25][26]

There was a Meditation Centre for some Asian communities in Malta until September 2014 but it was closed for not having legal permits by the Malta Environment and Planning Authority (MEPA).[27] Swatar is a common housing rental area specifically for students attending the University of Malta, that are from Gozo or are on Erasmus Programme.[28][29]

Gallery[edit]

Community buildings
Farmhouses and farmlands
Agricultural lands and stables
Residential buildings
Public gardens and landscaping
Business buildings

Schools[edit]

Businesses[edit]

  • Maypole, as part of a chain of groceries (closed)[33]
  • Tower Business Centre[34]

References[edit]

  1. ^ a b Scerri, John (undated). "Swatar". Malta-Canada.
  2. ^ "Swatar", The Church in Malta, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  3. ^ Xuereb, Mario (15 February 2015), "Serq mill-Kapella tas-Sagrament u sgass fid-Dar tal-Kapillan tas-Swatar", Television Malta, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  4. ^ Ltd, Allied Newspapers. "Fatality waiting to happen". 
  5. ^ a b Unknown (8 November 2008), "Swatar today becomes St Ġorġ Preca parish", Times of Malta, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  6. ^ Schembri, Gabriel (30 January 2015), "Power cuts in Swatar caused by damage to substation", The Malta Independent, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  7. ^ Swatar Administrative Committee (17 September 2014), "Seduta Nru. 4/2014", Swatar Administrative Committee, Birkirkara and L-Imsida Local Councils, Retrieved February 11, 2016, p. 1-5.
  8. ^ Unknown (5 October 2015), "Administrative Committee for Swatar", The Malta Independent, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  9. ^ Unknown (2 November 2010), "Fun day for children at Swatar", Times of Malta, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  10. ^ "PN wins most hamlets, PL gets most votes" (in angol). Times of Malta. 2010-06-06. Retrieved 2013-09-04. 
  11. ^ a b Unknown (8 November 2008), "Swatar today becomes St Ġorġ Preca parish", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  12. ^ Unknown (1 October 2008). "Swatar Parish dedicated to St Gorg Preca". The Malta Independent; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  13. ^ Scerri, John (undated). "Swatar". Malta-Canada; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  14. ^ Unknown (July 22, 2012), "Kappillan ġdid fis-Swatar", iNewsMalta.com, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  15. ^ Papagiorcopulo, Kevin (March 24, 2011), "The Archbishop visits the boys catechism centre of Swatatr", The Church in Malta; retrieved April 1, 2016.
  16. ^ "Swatar", The Church in Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  17. ^ Xuereb, Mario (February 15, 2015), "Serq mill-Kapella tas-Sagrament u sgass fid-Dar tal-Kapillan tas-Swatar", Television Malta, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  18. ^ Caruana, Michell (March 22, 2009), "Residents' parking in Swatar", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  19. ^ Msida Local Council (5 February 2009), "Completion of the Embellishment works at Swatar Garden", Msida Local Council, Retrieved February 11, 2016.
  20. ^ Schembri, Gabriel (January 30, 2015), "Power cuts in Swatar caused by damage to substation", The Malta Independent; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  21. ^ Malta Information Division (1981), "Reports on the Working of Government Departments for the Year 1981", Information Division, p. 80.
  22. ^ Unknown (17 October 2015), "Two generations exhibit side by side", The Malta Independent; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  23. ^ Unknown (September 27, 2014), "Exhibition, book featuring St John Paul II launched", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  24. ^ Unknown (October 11, 2015), "Their vibrant palette | Joseph and Henriette Mallia", Malta Today; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  25. ^ Unknown (April 17, 2012), "Open Weekend at HSBC Malta contact centre in Swatar", Malta Today; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  26. ^ Unknown (April 19, 2012), "Open Weekend at HSBC Malta contact centre in Swatar", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  27. ^ Unknown (September 15, 2014), "Mepa shuts Swatar meditation centre", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  28. ^ Unknown (January 2, 2016), "New bus route is bigger 'hassle' for Gozitans", Times of Malta; retrieved February 11, 2016.
  29. ^ Mifsud, Nigel (October 9, 2014), "42 karozza kklampjati fl-Università", Times of Malta; retrieved May 20, 2016.
  30. ^ Unknown (13 March 2010). "Extra-time winner for Knights". Times of Malta. retrieved March 7, 2016.
  31. ^ Scerri, John (undated). "Swatar". malta-Canada.
  32. ^ Malta Maritime Directory (23 June 2011), "Sea School, has been accredited by Transport Malta to deliver Nautical Licence", Maritime Directory, Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  33. ^ Administrator (15 September 2014), "Maypole launches Naxxar outlet", Y Public Relations & Marketing Services Ltd, Retrieved February 13, 2016.
  34. ^ Unknown (24 September 2015), "Hili Properties aiming high", Times of Malta, Retrieved February 13, 2016.