Hundreds of people have expressed their support for the dynamic and extensive regeneration plans for Pontypridd.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council, the Welsh Assembly Government and
consultants LDA Design are currently delivering a far-reaching long
term regeneration plan for the county town in a bid to establish it as
a vibrant, attractive town centre destination.
The entire scheme is also online following the launch of a new
website highlighting the potential projects for Pontypridd. This can be
found at www.pontypriddregeneration.com
A regeneration strategy was prepared three years ago for Pontypridd
to guide growth in the town centre that resulted in significant
progress. This is now being updated to focus attention on the areas
that bring the greatest benefit to the town’s economy over the next
five to 10 years.
Following lengthy consultation with partner agencies, seven key projects were identified in the exhibition:
• Restoration of the lido and creation of a new children’s wet play area in Ynysangharad War Memorial Park.
• Create a new park entrance with a highly visible entrance from Taff Street and a new landmark bridge
• Public realm enhancements with new paving, street furniture, lighting and public art
• Redevelopment of the Taff Vale Shopping Precinct
• Penuel Square redevelopment by creating a large town square following the demolition of the Fraternal Parade
• The Indoor Market could be refurbished to create a high quality food hall
• Town Centre Management and Maintenance to ensure the ongoing work
on buildings, streets and spaces to maintain a clean, safe and an
attractive town centre.
The public exhibition also highlighted 22 other potential
development projects that would help achieve the vision and aims of
making Pontypridd a focal point for activity and growth, a cultural
capital, a major tourist destination, create a dynamic and diverse
economy and a town that is easy to move through.
All proposals and ideas are subject to further investigation,
funding, and discussion with property owners, planners and other
The projects could be led by public or private sector support and
many were new ideas that have yet to be discussed fully with funders or
property owners at this stage.
The range of projects included the ongoing plan to redevelop the
Taff Vale Shopping Precinct and Gas Lane to create a high quality
shopping scheme with adjacent car parking and the restoration of
Ynysangharad War Memorial Park.
It was also felt that the potential is there to create a new town
centre square on the current Fraternal Parade site. The idea of
creating another footbridge and direct link between Taff Street and
Ynysanagharad War Memorial Park to create an impressive new entrance
into the much-loved “jewel” of Pontypridd.
The refurbishment of the indoor market with the creation of a high
quality food hall and also the potential refurbishment or even
demolition of the old Town Hall and the bingo hall at the top of Taff
Street was illustrated
Enhancement works to Sardis Road car park, the railway station
buildings, Millfield site, Pontypridd RFC ground, the bus station,
Brown Lenox and the former Coedylan Comprehensive School site were also
shown. The suggestion of providing a much-awaited leisure centre was
also listed along with enhanced cyclepaths, footpaths and improved
traffic flow along Rhondda Road was considered.
Leighton Andrews, Deputy Minister for Regeneration, said the
regeneration plans were of vital importance for the future prosperity
of Pontypridd which would bring benefits to local businesses and local
“The regeneration strategy has the potential to attract substantial
private sector investment which could transform and revitalise the town
centre. The success of any regeneration project depends on the
involvement and support of local people,” he said.
“We need to hear the views and thoughts of local people which is why
this consultation is taking place and I hope as many people as possible
will respond and provide valuable feedback which will inform our future
plans and proposals.”
Recent progress in Pontypridd includes the opening of Pennant House
and the Catherine Street car park, private initiatives giving the town
a high quality restaurant, cafes and deli and further work is underway
on a town centre hotel.
The town centre has seen the installation of new signage and further
maintenance projects are already improving the town centre environment.
The removal of traffic from Taff Street and the construction of a
demonstration area with paving, seating and artwork illustrates how the
rest of the town centre could be developed. An exhibition of these
future plans is expected to take place in January 2009.
Work is underway to secure Heritage Lottery Funding to restore the
lido and Ynysangharad War Memorial Park. The illumination works of the
William Edwards Bridge and Brunel Viaduct are expected to be installed
by Christmas and the commission of a gateway sculpture at the Broadway
roundabout has also been carried out.
European funding opportunities mean that Pontypridd has never had a
better chance of success in obtaining up to £9million which will need
to be match funded from various funding streams, resulting in an
initial £18million being invested in the town centre.
Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s Cabinet Member for Economic Development
and Housing Cllr Paul Cannon said: “These are the most exciting and
dynamic proposals for the regeneration of Pontypridd town centre ever
unveiled and I am very enthusiastic about the sheer wealth of
opportunities on offer as we strive to make Pontypridd a major
destination of the future.
“Of course much of this work is dependent on funding streams and the
support of other agencies, but I’m sure those who visited the
exhibition viewed it with a positive outlook on the future of
Pontypridd following many years of inactivity and uncertainty.
“The regeneration of Pontypridd is most certainly not inactive given
the many projects completed or still ongoing which are visible for all
to see when they visit the town centre.
“These new key projects and potential developments will undoubtedly
have a massive effect on Pontypridd and create a county town to be