Work steps up on transformation of former BHS in Swansea

Work underway at Swansea’s former BHS, where contractors Kier are in the early stages of transforming the building in public services hub Y Storfa. Pic: Swansea Council

A much loved old Swansea city centre building is beginning to change as it prepares or an exciting future.

Contractors Kier, working on behalf of Swansea Council, have started to transform Oxford Street’s former BHS.

It’s set to become Y Storfa, a public services hub that’ll attract thousands of visitors every week.

A short distance from bus stops, cycle routes and car parks, it’ll be home to services such as the city’s main public library and West Glamorgan Archive Service, Swansea’s Careers Wales service and Citizens Advice Swansea Neath Port Talbot.

Other services the public will be able to access there will be announced in the coming months.

Y Storfa will be part of Swansea’s ongoing council-led £1bn regeneration. It’ll offer a range of public services and useful resources.

Inside the building Kier have already removed many non-structural parts of the interior and some street-facing areas.

Council leader Rob Stewart said: “It’s fantastic to see this building in the very early stages of its transformation.

“It’ll be a welcoming place for many thousands of people and will help bring new footfall to the city centre.

“Local businesses – as well as the many people who use it – will benefit from Y Storfa.

“It’ll be another great reason for people to enjoy their city centre, standing right next to Castle Square Gardens which is due to get a greener, more people-friendly new look soon.”

Jason Taylor, regional director at Kier Construction Western & Wales, said: “We are pleased to be continuing our ongoing relationship with Swansea Council and to be developing Y Storfa, which will increase vital community space in the heart of the city.

“The regeneration works will help improve the social, economic, environmental and cultural wellbeing of the local community during the construction works and leave a lasting, positive legacy when completed.”

To help accommodate the work a number of parking spaces have been temporarily lost in the council’s Park Street East car park.

Contractors aim to keep inconvenience to a minimum.

Those with questions about the work – or ideas on how Kier can support local causes and events wherever possible – can phone site manager Jenny Jones on 07966 861721.

Some council services to move to Y Storfa will relocate from the Civic Centre that’s in line to be redeveloped as a new city seafront district in a partnership between the council and world-renowned developers Urban Splash.

New homes and leisure and hospitality uses could feature there, along with greenery, public spaces and a new walkway to the beach.