A major reform of the market area of Pere Garau in Palma is being planned next year and will potentially include an underground carpark, a nursery and a civic centre.

Town Planning Councillor, Yolanda Garvi said yesterday that the project will nevertheless have to wait for financing guarantees.

Garvi was presenting the winning design of a competition for the reconstruction of the market and its surroundings. During this year, she said, the project will be carefully planned and several stages benchmarked according to budget.

She said though that local government will have to decide on just how the ambitious programme is to be financed to enable works to kick off at the start of next year. The first item on the agenda will be the underground carpark but prior to any building taking place, the Council will need to guarantee that whilst the works are ongoing, the commercial activity of the market and surrounding areas will not be forced to close.

The winning project has been devised by architect Francisco Pizá. He envisages keeping the original municipal market building. It will, however, undergo partial modification by being aligned with the streets which branch off at angles from the main square. The design intends to open up the surrounding areas of Pere Garau, by using the market building as a crossroads for the suburb rather than as an obstruction.