Demolition of the former Oceananightclub which previously occupied the site has already been completed, and work on the construction of 100,000 sq ft of state-of-the-art office space earmarked for innovative businesses in sectors such as ICT and life sciences is set to begin in 2019. Two vacant properties on Oxford Street have also been pulled down to allow the creation of a pedestrian walkway between the Quadrant bus station and the new workspace.
Gleeds joins urban design experts the Urbanists, built environment specialists Architecture 00 and commercial property consultants Cushman Wakefield in the line-up of organisations working alongside WSP to deliver the scheme.
The new Employment Hub forms part of a wider programme of redevelopment for The Kingsway under Swansea’s City Deal Digital Village proposal, which will eventually see it transformed into a pedestrian-friendly ‘digital district’. Once complete, it will boast new public areas, landscaped parkland, cycle tracks and a two-way single lane vehicle route.
The Kingsway transformation is being made possible by Swansea Council but is also due to benefit from funding via the £1.3bn Swansea Bay City Deal, an investment in 11 major projects across the Swansea Bay City Region. The project is also expected to attract funding from the UK Government, the Welsh Government, the public sector and the private sector.
Simon Williams, director at Gleeds said: “Gleeds is proud to be part of the team selected by Swansea Council to deliver this landmark scheme. Works on The Kingsway, and in particular the new Digital Employment Hub, will serve to attract huge investment and generate hundreds of jobs in the city centre which will be enormously beneficial to the local economy. This is a really exciting project and I look forward to progressing from the feasibility stage, on to planning and subsequently seeing the build phase get underway next year”.
Chris Pembridge, director at WSP in charge of the project, added: “I am delighted to be working with Gleeds on the Kingsway Digital Employment Hub. The Kingsway is set to become a thriving digital district and the Employment Hub will be vital in achieving the Council’s vision of turning the city centre into a vibrant and bustling centre for business and leisure.”