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First look at new city square planned for Cardiff

17 May 2024 3 minute read
An artist’s impression of what the public square planned for the former Cardiff Debenhams site could look like. Photo Virtual Planit.

Ted Peskett, local democracy reporter

Cardiff will have a new tree-lined public square in the city centre with a raised terraced area overlooking fountains and seating.

An artist’s impression shows the proposals for the site of the former Debenhams.

The department store in St David’s shopping centre closed in 2021 and was later purchased by Landsec in 2023.

A timeline for the new public space project was laid out in February 2024, when developers got to work engaging with members of the public through drop-in events and workshops.

Proposals for the open air public square include a play space with a water feature and a place for events that could host live music and street food vendors.

Thriving

Centre director at St David’s, Helen Morgan, said: “These designs for a new city square have the potential to bring so much to our thriving capital city.

“We’ve engaged more than 3,000 people on our early designs and are excited with how our intention to bring new and improved outdoor space to this part of St David’s has been received by the public.

“We listened to people telling us about the importance of incorporating nature, as well as performance, safe play space and a place for events, so these are central themes to our designs.”

The artist’s impression of the proposed site, published in Landsec’s annual results for 2024, also shows plans to landscape it.

Application

A full planning application for the development is expected to be submitted to Cardiff Council in July 2024.

The next step in the project will see further community engagement events take place at St David’s shopping centre.

Ms Morgan added: “Continued input from the community is essential to us shaping a successful place together.

“We look forward to sharing the updated plans with people in June – we’ll have more details to share on these events very soon.”

The proposal for the former Debenhams store, constructed in the late 1970s, involves demolishing the building.

According to the timeline of events for the project, demolition is planned to take place over the course of a year from spring 2024 to spring 2025.

The public open space could be open by summer 2026, provided there are no delays and if planning permission is granted.


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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
16 days ago

Blue sky!

Where are the Unicorns?

Realist
Realist
16 days ago

Seems only young, white, able-bodied people exist in this utopia…

Padi Phillips
Padi Phillips
16 days ago

We do need more open spaces in Cardiff, especially as any open space in the city centre usually ends up with yet another needless multi-storey block on it. I was looking through some photos I took one morning on my way home from work of the open space green area and seating that used to be where the Admiral insurance building is now. I think that should have remained as open space and Admiral told to hop it to somewhere on the fringes of the city, or maybe the Bay. Ditto with what’s been done with Central Square. The old… Read more »

Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
16 days ago
Reply to  Padi Phillips

The north shore of the Bristol Channel is becoming more like Philistia as Welsh Labour age…

Bernard McCormack
Bernard McCormack
15 days ago
Reply to  Padi Phillips

So true, Cardiff council planning do not have a clue of what an attractive development should look like.
The many Lego like blocks like the new bus station is just one example of the imaginative eyesores we have now in the centre.

Ap Kenneth
Ap Kenneth
15 days ago

First and foremost it is the developers and funders that don’t have a clue as to what is attractive and will be lasting additions to the urban fabric. It is what makes money ASAP.

Iago
Iago
16 days ago

Finally, something that’s not bloody student flats

Steve George
Steve George
16 days ago

An artist’s impression of what it ‘could’ look like but almost certainly won’t look like.

Ap Kenneth
Ap Kenneth
15 days ago
Reply to  Steve George

Probably true and doesn’t reflect those drizzle drenched days.

Linda Jones
Linda Jones
16 days ago

I would prefer the emphasis on council spending to be on housing and public transport. Stuff for locals not tourists and students

Ap Kenneth
Ap Kenneth
15 days ago
Reply to  Linda Jones

This is a development by a private company that bought the Debenham site

D Harding
D Harding
16 days ago

Walked from Central station ,to Queens st this morning ,and counted 15 homeless and down and outs sleeping in doorways ,or sitting against walls drinking and begging , it might be better to move all of those people to the new open space .

PG Tips
PG Tips
14 days ago
Reply to  D Harding

They will migrate there on their own 🙁

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