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Businesses urged to play key roles in Swansea regeneration catalyst

How Swansea Central Phase One looks now.

Welsh retail and hospitality businesses are being urged to explore new openings at one of the country’s highest profile regeneration schemes.

There are now opportunities to discuss leases on commercial units at the £135m Swansea Central Phase One scheme.

How Swansea Central’s arena will look.

The city centre scheme links the city to the sea and, on opening next year, will have at its heart a 3,500-capacity arena and conference centre wrapped in an attention-grabbing skin of more than 77,000 programmable LED bulbs.

The units on offer include a 129 sq m pavilion café-restaurant in expansive landscaped parkland next to the arena and a 113 sq m café or commercial base in a new social square next to the historic St David’s Church.

Also available are a number of new units for retail and restaurants in an eye-catching new block that will house more than 30 homes and 600-plus car parking spaces. They will front onto a busy new pedestrian route to be known as Wassail Street as a nod to one of the city centre’s former historic locations.

All are a stone’s throw from the city’s market and primary shopping areas and next to a dramatic 50m-long bridge designed by award-winning architects ACME and local artist Marc Rees that will soon cross the main Oystermouth Road.

Swansea Central Phase One is a catalyst for the city’s £1bn regeneration. It is being developed by Swansea Council. Funders include the council, Swansea Bay City Deal and the Welsh Government.

A new leasing website premieres some stunning 360-degree CGI images of the development. You can open the links from a phone, tablet or virtual reality device for an immersive experience.

Council leader Rob Stewart said: “Swansea wants to realise its potential as one of the UK’s most vibrant places to live, work, visit and study – and we want Welsh business to be part of this pivotal first phase.

“Swansea Central is at the forefront of our ambitious regeneration and we want great ideas for independent and destination restaurants and for retail. Initial leasing opportunities are now available for all those.”

Robert Francis-Davies, the council’s cabinet member for investment, regeneration and tourism, said: “From our spectacular beach and historical landmarks, to our world-leading universities and institutions, Swansea provides a wealth of opportunity.

“Alongside other transformative projects taking place across the city, Swansea Central will attract more people to the city centre, and greatly strengthen our economic buoyancy.

“I urge Welsh businesses to take a look at the new offers we have as part of this iconic scheme.”

Swansea already enjoys and annual tourism spend of more than £460m. The arena is expected to draw a further 230,000 visitors a year. Audience members will include many from the 600,000 people who live within a half-hour drive of the venue.

The city’s population is expected to grow by more than 10% in the coming decade and a half. It has around 30,000 university students.

The arena and conference centre will be operated on a long-term basis by live entertainment leader Ambassador Theatre Group. A 150-room hotel will follow.

The leasing opportunities are being handled by David Henderson-Williams, of development managers RivingtonHark (phone 020 7182 1840, email [email protected]) and by the council’s Jonathan Hicks – [email protected].