Major plans to regenerate Swansea city centre will soon take a step forward.
Site investigation works for phase one of the Swansea Central development are due to start later this month, paving the way for new attractions including a 3-500 capacity digital indoor arena.
Also including a digital square, a broad pedestrian bridge over Oystermouth Road, a hotel and a new car park on the current LC car park site, work on phase one is expected to start this time next year.
Earmarked for completion in 2020, the phase one facilities would form part of a year-long celebration of culture if Swansea’s shortlisted bid for UK City of Culture 2021 beats off competition from Coventry, Paisley, Sunderland and Stoke-on-Trent for the title.
Rivington Land is managing the development of the Swansea Central plans for Swansea Council.
“Planning consent is in place for the Swansea Central development, a top class operator has been selected to run the digital indoor arena and we’ve started the search for a hotel operator, so a great deal of progress on our plans to transform the city centre has already been made,” said Cllr Rob Stewart, Swansea Council Leader.
“But the site investigation works starting later this month and lasting several weeks into September will be the first time people see activity on site, which is further evidence of our commitment to deliver these enormously exciting plans for the benefit of Swansea people, Swansea businesses and visitors to the city.
“These works are needed to inform the detail of construction, which will be starting this time next year. Detailed designs will also be announced in coming months.”
An economic impact study into phase one of the Swansea Central development plans has found they will generate £35.4 million and create 560 jobs during a two-year construction project. Once operational, the new facilities will be worth £11.9m a year to Swansea’s economy, helping support 469 jobs.
Cllr Stewart said:
“The new indoor arena will attract up to 200 days of concerts, exhibitions and other events every year, but as well as leading to world class attractions of this kind, these plans will open up jobs and opportunities for local people, businesses and supply chains. They’ll also act as a catalyst for other city centre sites and generate more footfall and spending for our existing traders, helping lead to even more investment in future.”
Phase two of the Swansea Central development will see new shops, restaurants, cafes, a boutique cinema and other new facilities introduced on the former St David’s shopping centre site.