The Regiostars Public Choice Awards: Europe’s label of excellence for the best EU-funded projects, demonstrating innovation and new approaches in regional development. This year, on the 15th-anniversary edition of this prestigious competition, out of 300 participating projects from across the EU and 15 shortlisted projects, our very own Cittadella scored the highest number of votes.
And how could it not? Renowned for the outstanding trompe l’oeil painting on its ceiling, depicting the interior of a dome that was never built, the Gozitan ancient fortress alone is a masterpiece brimming with historic treasures, ranging from the Neolithic period, thus being a gem in Gozo’s crown. Following the 14.5-million-euro facelift - involving the restoration and rehabilitation of the entire external fortified walls and military internal structures – this old city not only further improved its appearance, but as Commissioner Elisa Ferreira righteously stated, this investment gave
“this beautiful historic monument a new life for present and future generations.”
It's safe to say that such a project involved hundreds of hours of labour and planning, with a large team of professionals and experts coming together throughout the various stages.
From the use of laser scanning technology providing the documentation of all the city’s fortifications thus allowing the state of conservation to be mapped in detail and an accurate analysis is undertaken before stabilising the ground and restoring the ramparts; to the restoration of the St Martin’s Cavalier, St John’s demi-bastion and the north-facing ramparts; and the marketing campaign team of Vote Cittadella launched on 22nd October 2022.
The Cittadella project had what it takes to win this competition, ticking all the boxes by inspiring best practices, showing breadth and scope, creating jobs, and improving citizens' lives. Hence a massive congratulations go to all the professionals involved whose sterling work and expertise brought about the achievement of this well-deserved European-wide stamp of approval.