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Newport Centre demolition on cards

03 Oct 2022 2 minute read
Newport Centre. Picture: Google.

Rhiannon James, Local Democracy Reporter

Planning committee members will decide this week whether Newport Centre should be demolished to make way for a new seven-storey building.

Newport Centre opened in 1985 and is home to a multi-purpose sports hall and gym.

Its swimming pool closed at the beginning of the Covid-19 pandemic and is now permanently closed. The remainder of the centre remains open for a range of sporting and leisure activities.

The report, which is to be presented to the committee on Wednesday, October 5, states: “The building, architecturally, is dated and no longer contributes positively to the character of the surrounding area.”

Plans for a new “state-of-the-art” leisure centre on Usk Way were approved in November 2021. According to the report this unlocks the site for new uses.

Approval expected

Newport City Council’s planning committee is expected to approve the demolition and redevelopment following officers’ recommendation that permission be granted with conditions.

Prominent frontages on the River Usk and Kingsway are included in the outline application, which was submitted by Coleg Gwent and Newport City Council.

The proposed building will be for educational use, in addition to having shops, restaurants, offices and a hotel.

Natural Resources Wales (NRW) has said it has concerns due to “inadequate information” in relation to flooding, and if this hasn’t been received it will object to the application.

The council report states that there’s a 0.5% flood risk according to the Flood Map for Planning (FMfP).

The location of the site is described as “highly sustainable” in a transport statement prepared by planning consultancy Cambria, on behalf of the applicants.

A number of pedestrian paths are expected to be proposed in the reserved matters application, and the existing vehicular access on Emlyn Street is to be retained.

This is an outline application, meaning that, if it is approved, further details such as the number of car parking spaces and landscape will be confirmed in a future reserved matters application.

The planning committee meeting livestream may be viewed here.

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