Icon 21 scheme wins backing of city centre leaders
£50M PLANS for a new student village, shops and restaurants in Mariner Street have been hailed as a major boost for Swansea’s city centre.
Swansea BID and Coastal Housing, who have led regeneration of the High Street area with their Urban Village project, have both praised the opportunities the scheme offers the city centre.
The scheme – Icon 21 – was unveiled last week and will see the regeneration of the top of the High Street area, helping create a new gateway to the city centre just outside the city’s railway station.
The project will improve the look and feel of High Street, boost city centre businesses, generate more vibrancy and help attract even more investment in future.
Swansea Council is helping facilitate the scheme by selling its portion of the Mariner Street site to a development company called RDE Silex. Agreement with two private landowners has also been reached, as well as with Network Rail, who have agreed to relocate to the top deck of the High Street multi-storey car park.
A planning application for the Mariner Street project, which has the support of the Design Commission for Wales, could be submitted as early as next month.
Russell Greenslade, Chief Executive of Swansea BID, said: “This is of course more positive news for the City Centre and its businesses following on from the recent regeneration plans announced.
“High St is one of the main transport hubs and gateways for visitors to our City so having this new development in this area will instantly make an impact.
“Not only will it be a welcomed impactive visual addition but it will also increase the number of people living in the City Centre which in turns improves and develops greater foot flow and vibrancy ultimate benefiting the businesses and the economy.”
Gareth Davies, Director of Development at Coastal Housing Group, said: “Coastal welcomes the Icon 21 development, which is set to further progress the regeneration of Swansea High St.
“Not only will this latest development encourage more footfall to the centre of Swansea but it will further position the High St as a vibrant and attractive place to live and work.
“It is no secret that the High St has struggled in recent times, and Coastal has been especially involved in regeneration projects in this area over recent years including the transformation of the former Iceland food store and of course the delivery of the Urban Village.
“It’s encouraging to see further investment in the area, as schemes such as Icon 21 continue to breathe a new lease of life to High St.”
Rob Stewart, Leader of Swansea Council, said: “We recognise the importance of High Street because it’s a key gateway in and out of the city centre that gives many people their first impressions of Swansea when they step off the train.
“This scheme shows how committed we are to ensuring the city centre as a whole benefits from regeneration. This is important, not just to give the people of Swansea the kind of top quality city centre they deserve, but also to reinforce the city centre’s role as a key driver of the Swansea Bay City Region economy.”
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