12/05/2021

Newyddion Cymru Ar-Lein : Wales News Online

Newyddion Lleol a Chenedlaethol Cymru – Local and National News for Wales

There is a good feel about Pontypridd and traders can see the town is on the up, the leader of the council has said.

Councillor Andrew Morgan was commenting on a report to cabinet on Monday, November 15 which provided an updated on how some of the major projects in the town are going.

He said that there is a real opportunity to turn Pontypridd into a thriving town.

The projects are part of the regeneration framework for Pontypridd which includes the town centre regeneration programme, the Lido, and railway station improvements.

These projects have benefited from nearly £115m of investment with Llys Cadwyn and the footbridge linking it to Ynysangharad Park having been completed.

The report said that development options for 96-99a and 100-102 Taff Street (the former Marks and Spencers, Dorothy Perkins and Burtons buildings) are currently being considered with a further report explaining them set to come forward in the new year.

In March 2021 these vacant buildings were bought with a £390,000 investment from the council and Welsh Government.

The former bingo hall and Angharad’s nightclub were bought by the council in 2020 and demolished in August 2021 ready for development.

They’ve had £2.2m investment from the council and Welsh Government and discussions are taking place with the commercial sector and Welsh Government and advice is being sought from urban designers and commercial experts.

Redevelopment options are currently being considered with a further
report coming forward in the new year.

Works have continued throughout 2021 to deliver a £1.2m worth of improvements to Ynysangharad Park funded from the council and Welsh Government via the Valleys Regional Park initiative.

Improvements have included a full refurbishment of all the main footpaths, the installation of upgraded LED street lighting, and a new changing facility at the lido.

A further £1.9m has been secured from Welsh Government and the Heritage Lottery Fund for the design and restoration of the sunken garden, bandstand area, rock outcrop area, and a new training and activity centre. This is scheduled to be finished in early 2023.

The £4.5m YMCA project funded by the council, Welsh Government, and the Arts Council for Wales is scheduled for completion in late 2021 and will include offices and workspace available for rent to social enterprises and businesses and arts facilities.

Plans are under way for the refurbishment of The Muni Arts Centre to bring it back into use with funding from council and Welsh Government.

The £500,000 first stage of works are currently under way and nearing completion, with £5.3m recently announced for the scheme from the UK Government Levelling Up fund.

TThe Cwrt yr Orsaf extra care facility was finished earlier this month and has been built through a partnership between the council and Linc Cymru.

The facility is designed to assist older people to live as active and independent lives as possible with 24/7 on-site support available if needed.

Built on the former Pontypridd Magistrates’ Court site, the £50m development includes 60 apartments, dining and lounge areas, a communal kitchen, a hair salon, a car park, communal landscaped gardens and a day care unit.

The Pretty Ponty scheme has seen a rain garden created to provide sustainable drainage and tackle the issue of surface water collecting at Mill Street in heavy rainfall.

The £55,000 investment from Welsh Government aims to reduce the amount of surface water on the pedestrian area, improve the effectiveness of
the drainage network, increase the flooding resilience of the area and improve the look of this part of town.

Councillor Robert Bevan, cabinet member for enterprise, development and housing, said the placemaking plan has been a “great success” and they are looking forward to building on it.

He said: “It shows the commitment that this authority has into reinvesting into our town centres and regenerating town centres and taking them forward post Covid.”

Deputy leader Councillor Maureen Webber said there has been a “huge amount of work” done adding that it is “extremely pleasing and beneficial for all our communities throughout the county borough.”

She also praised the “extremely successful” Levelling Up funding bid for the Muni adding that she thinks the reopening is “something that we all welcome and look forward to.”

The leader Councillor Andrew Morgan said: “It is important to recognise the amount of work that has gone in.

He said The Muni is going to become “a real cultural hub for The Valleys.”

Cllr Morgan later added: “The town has a good feel about it.”

He mentioned that some people have said they’re spending money in one area over another but he said that they have seven or eight principal towns as opposed to neighbouring authorities which may only have one.

He said that there is an awful lot of work going on outside of Pontypridd in other town centres such as Aberdare, Mountain Ash, Tonypandy and Porth.

But on the list of projects for Pontypridd he said: “It is quite exceptional the amount of funding we’ve been able to draw down and the difference.

“Certainly speaking to traders they see the town on the up.”

Cllr Morgan said there are very few small shops vacant and he said there is a “real opportunity here to turn Ponty into a real thriving town.”

 

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