Swansea Labour has been the driving force for what will be one of the city centre’s biggest ever transformation projects after full planning permission was granted for the £120m Swansea Central Phase One scheme.
The green light from council planners means building could start very soon for a 3,500-capacity digital indoor arena, coastal park, digital plaza, “gateway” landmark pedestrian bridge, new homes and premises for retail, food and drink.
The project is expected to be a catalyst for city-wide regeneration.
Swansea Labour leader and council leader Cllr Rob Stewart insisted: “This final planning decision allows us to progress swiftly with one of our city’s biggest ever transformation projects.
“Our 3,500-capacity state-of-the-art arena will be the first such venue in the UK to be wrapped in a dynamic digital skin. It will be a unique draw for Swansea, will generate hundreds of new jobs and a significant annual boost to the local economy.
“It will help us attract more hotels, retailers, restaurants and other leisure offerings.”
Cllr Stewart is adamant that Swansea Central Phase One would provide a kick start for future development and growth.
“The approval by the planning committee is not the end of the journey but the start.
“The Kingsway and neighbouring roads are already being transformed into a fabulous, people-friendly environment and further planning applications will be submitted for that area’s digital district – this will be a perfect environment for tech companies to grow.
“We are also working hard to bring to fruition an upgrade for Castle Gardens, to create a Swansea Central Phase Two project and to develop our Civic Centre site.”
“More major investment announcements will follow in the coming months as we deliver more and illustrate why Swansea is such a great place to invest.
As well as the Swansea Central Phase One schemeplans for a 780-bedroom student tower near Swansea’s city centre railway station have also been given the go-ahead by aSwansea Council planning committee.
The building – described as having a “slender tower of bold design” – will rise up to 17 storeys from the existing Mariner Street Car Park and neighbouring land. Its ground floor will have commercial units.
CllrStewart said: “This is another signal that Swansea is on the up.
“This tower will be a bold addition to the city skyline and symbolises the successful regeneration of High Street.
“The 780 student rooms and high quality commercial space will generate significant levels of footfall and add a substantial boost to improving High Street for residents, businesses and visitors.”