Hacer Developments, a Swansea-based development company, has submitted a planning application to Neath Port Talbot Council to redevelop Aberafan House into 41 new apartments.
A former office block, Aberafan House is a prominent building in Port Talbot town centre, visible from a number of viewpoints, particularly when driving into Port Talbot via the M4.
This proposal is to bring this vacant building back into beneficial use through the creation of high quality residential accommodation in the heart of the town centre. If approved, work could begin to transform this prominent building later this year.
The scheme has been designed by Powell Dobson Architects in consultation with the Design Commission for Wales and will be undertaken by Hacer Developments in partnership with Pobl Group (formerly Gwalia). The £4.7m investment will not only help meet housing need but bring additional footfall and vibrancy to the town centre.
Internal layouts have been planned to allow maximum flexibility of use, with the ability to be adapted to cater for a range of disabilities.
The proposal also includes the improvement of the immediate surroundings of the building through environmental and access improvements to the riverside walk. Improved lighting and the provision of benches and street furniture along riverside walk aims to create a more welcoming social space for both residents and the public. There will also be ample provision of cycle racks for residents.
Neath Port Talbot Council has secured £2.7m funding from the Welsh Government to redevelop Aberafan House as part of Port Talbot’s Vibrant and Viable Places Regeneration Programme.
It is part of a regeneration programme in and around the town centre which will see over £35m invested into providing new homes, improving existing homes, providing space for new businesses and creating new transport and communication links.
The Programme demonstrates the commitment of Neath Port Talbot Council to build a better future and transform the living and working environment of the town. The overall aim is to regenerate the town centre, provide new homes and improve existing homes, provide space for new businesses and create new transport and communication links.
Gareth Nutt, Director of Environment said:
“The redevelopment of Aberafan House would not only help meet local demand for affordable housing but would add to the vitality and viability of the town centre.
“The proposal has the potential to make a positive, transformational contribution to Port Talbot town centre, improving the perception of the town and helping to create a community where people can live and work.”
James Neathercoat, Asset Manager for the Aberafan Shopping Centre which owns Aberafan House said:
“We’re extremely hopeful that the plans are approved by the council. This is a £4.7m regeneration project for the centre of Port Talbot which will also see some external public areas upgraded, and is an important step in our long term plans.”
“We’ve been working to bring continuous investment to the town including new stores and national high street brands with Costa Coffee our latest addition to the shopping centre.
“The combination of new jobs and new homes is at the forefront of long-term success for Port Talbot. This development is a great opportunity, creating quality and more importantly affordable new homes for what at the moment is an unused and dormant space.”
Carwyn Davies, Hacer Developments said:
“We have worked closely with our partners in putting together this significant regeneration proposal which will have a positive impact on the town centre.”
“It's a really exciting project and one we are really proud to be part of.”
Elfed Roberts, Head of Projects Pobl Group added:
“Pobl Group is very pleased to be working with Hacer Developments and Neath Port Talbot Council on this exciting project.
“The refurbishment of Aberafan House has the potential to positively transform Port Talbot town centre, whilst providing much needed affordable housing at a central location.”