A high-profile Swansea Council scheme to bring more key public services to the heart of the city centre has received a major funding boost.
A £2m grant from the Welsh Government has been provided – and a further £3.5m is available to the council to develop the former BHS store as a public focal point.
The funding is being provided under the Welsh Government’s Transforming Towns initiative that provides support to improve town centres across Wales.
Council leader Rob Stewart said: “This substantial funding will help us deliver an outstanding venue for people to meet and to access a range of public services that are important to them.”
Deputy Climate Change Minister Lee Waters said: “I am pleased we have been able to support this significant scheme in Swansea city centre.”
The council made a series of policy commitments in June to deliver support – in the subsequent 100 days – to communities that will make a real difference to people’s lives. Continuing to deliver a £1 billion regeneration of the city centre was one of those commitments.
The hub, in Oxford Street’s former BHS and What! store, could be visited by thousands of people every week.
The aim is for the building – which could open next year – to be a welcoming base for services delivered by the council and other organisations.
Council services being considered to relocate there include Swansea Library, the West Glamorgan Archive Service and the Contact Centre.
Council staff and the public are being kept up to date on plans. The council continues to consider options for their future locations of other Civic-based services.
Council cabinet member Robert Francis-Davies said: “The Transforming Towns grant is an important step for our community hub plan. The hub will be of great use to the public – and easily accessible to all.”