Offices could be built on Grand Theatre car park
Swansea Council has released an artist's impression and video of a potential new civic centre planned for its staff.
As part of major seafront redevelopment plans, Swansea Council staff will be relocated to the city centre in a few years time.
Now a council report is likely to propose the Oxford Street car park site opposite the Grand Theatre as a clear option for the construction of a new building to replace the Civic Centre on Oystermouth Road.
Further work to identify alternative car parking provision for Grand Theatre customers and council staff would take place if the proposal is approved in future.
The council has appointed a company called Trebor Developments to manage the regeneration of the Civic Centre site. Hotels, offices, restaurants, cafés and hundreds of residential units are among their proposals, as well as a 'hydro hub' facility that could include an aquarium, a science-themed tourist attraction and an aquatic science research centre.
The Civic Centre site's redevelopment will follow-on from the regeneration of Kinsgway and the St David's development site, with new office space for tech-hub businesses being earmarked for the location of the former Oceana nightclub building that's now being demolished.
Cllr Rob Stewart, Swansea Council Leader, said: "The transformation of Swansea city centre into a leading destination for shopping, business, jobs, leisure and recreation was always going to be carried out in phases.
"Phase one of our plans will see Kingsway transformed into a digital district for major employers and tech-hub businesses, as well as the St David's site being transformed into a mixed-use development made up of new shops, restaurants, a hotel, a boutique cinema, a digital indoor arena and plenty of car parking spaces.
"Considerable progress is being made, with the Swansea Bay City Deal soon in line for approval from the UK Government and Rivington Land, our development managers for the St David's site, submitting an outline planning application next month. We're wholly committed to regenerating the Civic Centre site too, and will be moving on that once St David's work is under way.
"Our Civic Centre plans mean council staff will have to be relocated to a new building in the city centre, with alternative car parking for staff and Grand Theatre visitors also being looked into. No final decision has been made, but the Oxford Street car park site has been identified as an option for a replacement building for council staff as we look to further boost city centre footfall and encourage more spending in our city centre businesses. Relocating our staff to the city centre could boost the city centre economy by £5m to £6m a year.
"Council staff will continue to be kept updated and consultation would take place as part of any planning application that may come forward in future."
Consultation is also now under way on major redevelopment plans for Kingsway. Proposals include a new two-way traffic route and a tree-lined urban park, with work expected to start later this year.
More trees, plants and turfed areas have also been introduced on West Way as part of work to improve traffic flows there and generate better pedestrian links between Sandfields and the city centre. The scheme is being funded by the Welsh Government's Vibrant and Viable Places Swansea City Centre Regeneration programme that was awarded in June, 2014.
Cllr Stewart said: "Environmental improvements on West Way and Kingsway are vitally important if we're to generate a business-friendly district that will attract major employers and open up thousands of new jobs for local people, while not having an adverse impact on traffic flows.
"Our West Way improvement work is well-advanced, but consultation on our Kingsway plans is on-going until Friday March 10, so there's plenty of time for people to share feedback that will be considered."
Visit http://www.swansea.gov.uk/thekingsway to have a look at the Kingsway plans and have your say.