Cardiff City Centre Regeneration

Cardiff Logo smallA route map to deliver a new bus interchange for Cardiff and regenerate the Central Square area of the city will be discussed by the City of Cardiff Council’s Cabinet on Thursday (July 17th.)

Last month BBC Cymru Wales announced they would be relocating their headquarters to a landmark Sir Norman Foster and Partners building in the heart of Cardiff’s city centre at Central Square. The statement building will form the centre-piece of a ¾ of a million square feet mixed use development being taken forward by Rightacres Property Co and the Council.

The redevelopment is a key priority of the Council’s Administration and includes the delivery of a new bus interchange as well as new high quality public spaces north and south of the railway line.

The Council’s Cabinet recently approved plans to secure the freehold ownership of the Wood Street NCP car park to complete the comprehensive freehold ownership of the Central Square regeneration area to enable the scheme to progress.

The development will mean that the current bus station will need to be relocated giving the city Council a once in a generation opportunity to redesign the capital’s bus interchanges creating an inspirational new gateway for Cardiff.

City of Cardiff Council Leader Cllr Phil Bale said. “The decision by BBC Cymru Wales to relocate to the city centre is a massive vote of confidence and the next step in our ambitious regeneration plan.

“It will result in the building of a major headquarter building designed by a world renowned architect right in the heart of the city centre as well as the creation of other high grade office accommodation.

“It also means we can redesign our welcome to the world, establishing an area of which the city can be justly proud.

“This is a huge development and we are committed to ensuring that the beneficial changes this will create will be consulted on throughout to ensure we are creating the best developments for Cardiff now and into the future.”

BBC Cymru Wales are planning to relocate in 2018 which means that the current bus station will need to close in summer 2015 to enable the development to begin.

Two potential sites for the bus interchange have been identified:

  • Marland House/NCP Car Park site (north of the railway line);
  • Network Rail Car Park site (south of the railway line)

Both sites have immediate proximity to Cardiff Central Railway Station and offer the potential to keep the bus interchange open on major event days and for weekend night services – by providing access from areas that will not be subject to road closures.

A major consultation exercise will be undertaken both in terms of the relocation and design of the new bus interchange and also the interim bus transport arrangements needed.

Extensive bus and passenger transport modelling has already been undertaken and further work has recently been commissioned alongside a review of the bus network in Cardiff, including city centre operations which will help identify any additional temporary arrangements and will assist with the bus station consultation.

In anticipation of the need to provide interim bus station arrangements the Council has also carried out a series of bus infrastructure improvements to increase on-street capacity including works at Westgate Street, Custom House Street, and Churchill Way. Further opportunities for temporary capacity increases are also available in Wood Street, Lower St Mary Street and potentially Callaghan Square.

The improvements will mean that the majority of Cardiff Bus services will be able to maintain their existing routes, either circling the city centre in an anti-clockwise direction or looping in Mill Lane / Custom House Street to exit the city centre via Westgate Street.

Cabinet Member for Transport, Planning and Sustainability Cllr Ramesh Patel said: “The city already has extensive experience of operating with the closure of the bus station as currently it needs to close during major events. With the work which has already been undertaken to improve the infrastructure elsewhere in the city centre we are confident the city can cope with the closure of the bus station while the new interchange is being constructed.

“We appreciate this is going to cause concern for people which is why we will be undertaking a major consultation exercise and keeping operators and bus users informed throughout about the changes. We also want to assure people that it is a matter of priority interim arrangements for bus operations will be in place before the current station is closed.

“We will shortly be speaking with bus and coach operators and transport experts to establish a strategic way forward before starting a public consultation exercise this autumn.

“This part of the city centre doesn’t give the best impression but this development gives us a once in a lifetime chance to create a place that the people of Cardiff are proud of and one that leaves a lasting impression for visitors.”

The Cabinet is due to discuss the proposals on Thursday (July 17th) when it will be recommended that the programme for delivery for the Central Square regeneration, including extensive public consultation, is approved.


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