Planning granted for new £40m development in Cardiff Bay

1 Jun 2016

Cardiff Waterside, funded by Aviva Investors, has been granted planning consent for a new development at its estate in Cardiff Bay. Leading architect Holder Mathias has been appointed to design the three buildings that constitute the new development, which includes a new 210-bedroom Premier Inn hotel and two speculative Grade A office developments totalling 160,000 sq ft.

The redevelopment of Cardiff Bay into a busy and vibrant centre for employment, leisure and living has been heralded as an urban regeneration success story in Wales. This has resulted in an increase in tourism but also a shortage of quality hotel accommodation.

This new phase will complete development at the cross roads between Bute Place and Pierhead Street, bringing together a combination of residential, commercial and cultural buildings of varying height, scale and materials. The trio of proposed buildings acknowledge and complement the existing street scene with a concept that references the architectural language of both the sites surrounding buildings and its historic past.

Stephen Hill, Partner at Holder Mathias, said: “Our vision for this development is premised on a desire to ‘complete’ the existing crossroads with a group of buildings that acknowledge and complement the eclectic character of Cardiff Bay, while adding a high degree of vibrancy to the street scene. As part of the design process, we wanted to consider the Cardiff Waterside estate in its entirety and particularly the impact that the three buildings would have on the immediate context of the site and the continuing development of the Bay itself. Cardiff is thriving and tourism is buoyant, which represents a huge opportunity to design and develop a new hotel for a universally recognised and much-loved brand that will add an interesting and valuable addition to the street scene, and to Aviva’s Cardiff Waterside estate.”

Commenting on the news, Rob Jones of Knight Frank, Investment Advisor to Aviva on the scheme says: “We are delighted that Premier Inn has chosen Cardiff Waterside as its next Cardiff location. This is recognition that Cardiff Bay is a thriving and busy hub for both business and leisure activity, while its profile continues to rise. This success shows the growing importance of Cardiff’s Waterfront to the city’s future expansion.

“Premier Inn will play a key part in ensuring the thousands of people who visit Cardiff Bay annually, be they tourists experiencing the Millennium Centre, business contacts, or politicians from across Wales, can stay in its heart. The news also strengthens the need for increased connectivity to the city’s Waterfront.”

For the design of the Premier Inn hotel, Holder Mathias has incorporated a simple use of surface material and ‘punched-hole’ window arrangement, which will act as an active frontage to the street. The two office buildings will be similarly designed for continuity, one of which will be speculatively designed for added flexibility for potential occupiers. The outline design of the three buildings reflect the local character and style already established, but remain flexible to market demand and specific occupier requirements.