Global investors to be invited to Swansea to discuss £70m opportunity

How Swansea Central Phase Two could look.

Investors from around the world are to be invited to Swansea to discuss a major regeneration opportunity.

Leading figures from Swansea Council met them at a global property event. Now, further talks are planned.

The aim is to attract £70m of private investment to help deliver the expansive Swansea Central Phase Two transformation project.

Council leader Rob Stewart said: “We saw many investors at MIPIM 2019 in France when we showcased our world-class scheme.

“Around 50,000 people attended the show, the biggest of its kind in the world, and we will now pursue follow-up discussions with a number of credible companies we met.

“We had many discussions and made many new contacts. Many of those we met were impressed by the vision and ambition of Swansea; it was a positive experience.”

It is planned that Swansea Central Phase Two will be a vibrant new destination at the heart of the city centre.

Covering an area approximately from St Mary’s Church to the St David’s multi-story car park, it will aim to mix the best existing buildings with new developments.

This could include a 200,000 sq m public sector office hub, almost 150 apartments, a cinema, restaurants and retail units.

It has outline planning permission and, when built, would complement the neighbouring £120m Swansea Central Phase One – including 3,500-capacity arena – which is due to be built in the next two years.

Swansea Central Phase Two was selected by the UK Government to be part of the Department for International Trade (DIT) Invest in Great Britain and Northern Ireland activity at the four-day MIPIM in Cannes.

The project formed part of a Welsh investment portfolio being promoted by the UK Government.

Cllr Stewart was accompanied at this month’s MIPIM by cabinet member for investment, regeneration and tourism Robert Francis-Davies.

Cllr Francis-Davies said: “Swansea’s presence at MIPIM showed the scale of our ambition.

“The world’s biggest investors were here and it’s them who we want as partners in developing our world-class future city centre.

“Swansea Central illustrates our vision to create a vibrant city centre, combining best in class public realm with a commercial hub, higher brand retail, apartment living and major new leisure attractions.

“Building work on our digital arena will begin this summer; it will be a catalyst for much more to come in an exciting future for Swansea.”

Swansea Central Phase One will deliver the arena, to be operated by Ambassador Theatre Group, a coastal parkland, a digital plaza, two multi-storey car parks, some residential and commercial use along with a new pedestrian bridge over the main Oystermouth Road.

The project is being managed by Rivington Land and constructed by specialist leisure contractor Buckingham.

The digital indoor arena and digital plaza elements of Phase One are due to be part-funded by the £1.3bn Swansea Bay City Deal.

Swansea Central Phase Two’s project owner is the council which owns all the land required for the development.

The council plans to be an anchor tenant for about a third of the commercial space and is in negotiation with other public bodies for the remainder.

Swansea is the city focus of the City Deal, a major capital investment programme jointly supported by the Welsh Government and UK Government.

Swansea Council is being advised by real estate specialists Cushman and Wakefield.