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FLATS and a commercial unit could rise from an unloved patch of land in the centre of Swansea.

The uninviting plot on Orchard Street is fenced in and flanked on one side by an ivy-covered building.

A company called Karim Developments wants to develop a six-storey block comprising 16 flats with a ground floor commercial unit.

The scheme would link back to a building directly behind on High Street, which runs parallel to Orchard Street. The plan is to convert the first and second storeys of the High Street-facing building, and add a further recessed level of flats on top.

In between the two buildings would be enclosed roof gardens featuring shrubs, climbers, bird boxes and pergolas. No parking spaces are planned.

The developer and its agent, Asbri Planning, has discussed the scheme with council planning officers after submitting a pre-application enquiry.

“The proposal will provide an attractive addition to Orchard Street whilst developing upon the existing building at High Street and overall improving the street-scape,” said a planning statement submitted as part of Karim Developments’ planning application, which officers are now considering.

Swansea Council has revamped Orchard Street to include wide pavements, trees and other greenery, but it is dominated in the middle by a multi-storey car park and rather drab health clinic.

Both ends of the street, though, have been transformed by new student accommodation at the railway station end and new flats and commercial space at The Kingsway end.

The fabric of High Street has also, in some sections, improved in recent years.

However, two High Street shops may have to be knocked down due to safety concerns. Scaffolding and fencing has been put around the shops – 226 and 226A – and Coastal Housing Group has applied to the council to demolish them.

Planning documents submitted as part of Coastal Housing Group’s application said the fencing was to reduce the risk of falling masonry striking the pavement.

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