Redevelopment of Festival Park in Ebbw Vale approved
Elgan Hearn, local democracy reporter
Blaenau Gwent councillors have “welcomed the much needed redevelopment” of Festival Park in Ebbw Vale after plans were given the green light.
At a meeting of Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council’s Planning Committee on Thursday, January 12, councillors wanted reassurances that the proposals by Mercia Real Estate for the park will not be a “damp squib.”
Birmingham-based Mercia Real Estate, who bought the park in 2021, lodged plans with the council to convert it into a “mixed use business centre.”
The main parts of the scheme will be to dismantle a number of the units and use that floor area for more yard space, parking, roads, and paths.
Some of the units will be modified and the canopies will be removed.
The central mall walkway will be resurfaced to become a service or access road.
Change of use
Change of use permission will also be needed for the shop units so that class A, B as well as D uses are accommodated at the site.
These cover retail, professional services, food and drink, offices and research, training and education, gyms and crèche facilities.
One change to the proposal is that the number of parking spaces will drop from 200 to 118.
Planning officer Helen Hinton had advised councillors to recommend approving the development.
Acting for the agent, Tim Gent said that the developers hoped to have people working at Festival Park in 12 month’s time.
Cllr Wayne Hodgins said: “I’m fully supportive of this as it’s been redundant for a considerable amount of time. There were concerns about it being vandalised so it will be a millstone off the authority’s neck.
“The only thing that concerns me that a couple of years ago we were talked through a scheme at length and unfortunately it never came.
“I appreciate there are no guarantees, we would like to see works happen within reasonable amount of time to reassure residents.”
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