Preliminary discussions have started with retailers, restaurants and cinema operators as the transformation of Swansea city centre into a world class leisure and shopping destination gathers pace.
Rivington Land and Trebor, the developers appointed by Swansea Council to manage the regeneration of the St David's and Civic Centre sites, have begun the process of securing tenants for the schemes.
Rivington Land, working with Acme, is managing the regeneration of the St David's development site that's made up of the former St David's shopping centre, the St David's multi-storey car park and the LC car park.
Their winning ideas for the site north of Oystermouth Road will provide 200,000 square feet of commercial space including retail, restaurants and a cinema. The scheme will be mixed use, featuring both private and affordable housing as well as student accommodation and a new car park. Some of the new businesses will form part of a new retail circuit stretching from Whitewalls to Oystermouth Road.
On the south of Oystermouth Road, Rivington Land is proposing a 3,500-seat indoor arena set within a new landscaped public space. The site will also feature car parking and a hotel, with the potential for a residential tower.
Trebor Developments will manage the regeneration of the Civic Centre site. Their winning ideas include 480 residential units, a 70,000 square foot space for a hotel or offices, and a 20,000 to 30,000 square foot space for food and drink businesses.
It's also being proposed the company works closely alongside Swansea University to further explore the potential for a ‘hydro hub' at the site that could include a public aquarium and a state-of-the-art aquatic sciences research centre.
Cllr Rob Stewart, Swansea Council Leader, said:
“Only just over three months have passed since the winning ideas for the St David's and Civic Centre sites were unveiled, but encouraging progress is already being made behind the scenes as we continue to work in close partnership with our development managers and the Welsh Government.
“Attracting leading shops, restaurants, cafes and leisure operators is critical to the success of the regeneration schemes, so this is why our development managers have already started work on this aspect of the planned redevelopments. Although we can't give details of the businesses and brands we're speaking to, Swansea people can rest assured we're doing all we can to secure tenants of the highest quality and popularity.
“Detailed design work has also started, which will combine with the steps to attract new traders and other businesses to inform site masterplans that will be subject to planning consideration and comprehensive consultation in future.
“These are among a number of schemes aimed at transforming Swansea city centre into a world class leisure and retail destination that meets the needs and aspirations of residents and visitors.”
A £50 million transformation of Mariner Street car park opposite High Street railway station has also recently been announced. The scheme, being spearheaded by a development company called RDE Silex, will include about 700 student flats above a ground floor complex of shops, a restaurant and a café.
Cllr Stewart said:
“The regeneration of the St David's and Civic Centre sites is hugely important, but we've got plans for many other parts of the city centre as well, including the redevelopment of the Mariner Street site and the transformation of Kingsway into a business district. These schemes will combine to boost vibrancy, generate employment, improve footfall and attract even more investment.”
John Laker, Chairman of Rivington Land, said
“We're delighted to have been chosen by Swansea Council and will continue to work hard to achieve their aspirations for the St David's site. This development will strengthen the retail provision in the city centre and transform the leisure offer in the wider area.”