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Swansea appoints contractor for £750m redevelopment plans

Credit: Swansea Council

An award-winning company appointed to lead a £750m redevelopment of several sites in Swansea has been described as ‘synonymous’ with Manchester’s success.

Urban Splash have now been appointed by Swansea Council as its preferred development partner for a number of sites in the city, including the Civic Centre, Swansea Central North on the former St David’s Shopping Centre site, and a plot of land along the riverside in St Thomas.

The company has developed over 60 regeneration projects across the UK in the last 25 years, including several in Manchester. These include the regeneration of the New Islington part of the city into one of the UK’s best places to live, according to The Sunday Times. The area now includes new homes, workspaces, a marina, shops and other activities.

Andy Burnham, Mayor of Greater Manchester, said: “Urban Splash is synonymous with Manchester’s success. I hope our story goes on further and am certain Urban Splash will continue to help us take this city to greater heights.”

Speaking about Urban Splash, Cllr Suzanne Richards, Manchester City Council’s Executive Member for Housing and Regeneration, said: “Their approach to regeneration has set a blueprint for urban renewal and has left a legacy of striking residential developments that have international renown. New Islington in particular should be considered a true regeneration success story, transforming a fringe area of the city centre into one of the most exciting places to live and work in the country.”

To be substantially funded by the private sector, early Urban Splash proposals for Swansea include a mixed-use city waterfront district at the Civic Centre site, anchored by the beach. New homes and a strong leisure and hospitality focus are also proposed, along with plenty of greenery, a new walkway to the beach, a mix of permanent and seasonal uses, and events to create an all-season visitor destination.

More work will now carried out on the early proposals for this site and others in Swansea before plenty of opportunities for local people to give their feedback and help shape the plans.

Other schemes developed by Urban Splash include the Royal William Yard project in Plymouth, where the company transformed a collection of Grade I and Grade II Listed waterfront structures into apartments, workspaces, galleries, bars, restaurants, markets, cultural events and exhibitions.

The company is also redeveloping the Grade II Listed Park Hill in Sheffield into a mixed-use cultural quarter, featuring hundreds of homes and workspaces – many of which are complete and fully occupied.

Cllr Terry Fox, Sheffield Council Leader, said: “Park Hill is one of Sheffield’s most iconic and talked about areas, rich in local history, telling the stories of Sheffield’s past while housing the promise of its future. Sixty years after being built, the area is once again a thriving, active community but now has the added vibrancy of regular cultural events, a contemporary café overlooking the city, independent businesses, and is the home of S1 Artspace showcasing a host of talent and attracting visitors from all over.”

Swansea Council’s appointment of Urban Splash followed an extensive search for a preferred development partner as part of the Shaping Swansea initiative.

At Swansea Central North, new office buildings, new apartments for residents and shared workspaces are proposed, along with space for small creative businesses.

A residential-led regeneration is proposed for the St Thomas site, featuring family homes, apartments, new public spaces and a new terraced river walk providing direct access to the river for the first time in over 150 years.

Further proposals in future will also cover opportunities to develop other key sites across Swansea.