The Council has confirmed the opening date for the new bridge in Pontypridd Town Centre, which will provide a new pedestrian link between Llys Cadwyn and Ynysangharad War Memorial Park from Saturday, August 15.
Despite significant challenges brought by Storm Dennis in February, followed by the Coronavirus emergency from March, the Council’s contractor Knights Brown has made good progress on constructing the bridge in recent months. Since the contractor returned to the site in mid-May following a short pause due to the pandemic, the structure has taken shape above the River Taff.
The new bridge is intended to increase pedestrian access between the Town Centre and Ynysangharad Park by establishing a third park entrance. One of the two existing entrances, the Marks and Spencer bridge, is currently closed due to storm damage. The Council has recently announced its plan to reopen it – along with the National Lido of Wales, Lido Ponty – by spring 2021.
The Council has benefitted from £800,000 funding from Welsh Government’s Targeted Regeneration Investment Programme to deliver the new bridge, and has today confirmed it will be opened for use on Saturday August 15.
The bridge will be open in accordance with Ynysangharad Park’s opening hours each day. In the first instance, temporary gates will be in place at either side of the bridge – and these will be replaced with permanent gates in the near future. Cyclists are also required to dismount before using the bridge due to the confined space, and to ensure the safety of other bridge users.
Councillor Robert Bevan, Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Enterprise, Development and Housing, said: “I’m delighted the Council has been able to confirm the opening arrangements for the new bridge in Pontypridd Town Centre, which will provide an invaluable additional access between the Llys Cadwyn development and Ynysangharad Park, as an extension of the newly-completed Taff Vale walkway along the River Taff.
“While 2020 has been incredibly testing for Pontypridd, there are a number of regeneration projects underway which should give local residents and businesses optimism for an exciting future. The new bridge is the first of these projects to be completed, while important work goes on behind the scenes to progress the future £4.5m plans for the Muni Arts Centre and works activity continues to progress on the £4.48m refurbishment of the Pontypridd YMCA.
“Meanwhile, the wider Llys Cadwyn development has seen two of the three buildings handed over to the Council. The gateway building is complete, and ready to be fully-opened when the circumstances in relation to Coronavirus will allow, while Transport for Wales has recently unveiled its branding at 3 Llys Cadwyn, signalling one of the final steps before its move to Pontypridd – which will be a huge boost to the town, delivering a large increase in footfall.”
The Llys Cadwyn development had benefitted from £10m funding from Welsh Government, including £7m from the European Regional Development Fund.
Transport for Wales will be based at Number 3 Llys Cadwyn (building nearest Gas Road Car Park). Number 2 Llys Cadwyn (centre building) will include Grade A office floorspace and one food/drink unit, while 1 Llys Cadwyn (nearest Bridge Street) will incorporate a 21st Century library, Council customer contact point and a state-of-the-art leisure/fitness centre.