Cabinet approves early transfer of land to Bridgend College
Posted on: Friday 04 August 2023
Bridgend County Borough Council’s Cabinet has approved the early transfer of land to Bridgend College to secure the new town centre campus.
As part of a ‘master’ planning programme which aims to regenerate Bridgend town centre over the next ten years, the proposed college development will be built on the former South Wales Police Station and Brackla One multi storey car park at Cheapside.
The demolition of the police station took place in June, and the removal of the multi storey car park is set to be completed by April 2024, with tenders just being issued.
The demolition of the car park poses challenges surrounding the structure of the building, as well as its proximity to the mainline rail network, Asda and Aldi. Network Rail will need to provide permission, and appropriate indemnity insurance should be in place, prior to work beginning on the car park.
In a meeting earlier this week, the council’s Planning Committee approved the proposals for the college. Set to open in September 2025, the campus will encompass two new buildings at Cheapside that will provide exceptional teaching and learning facilities, including a theatre, hair and beauty salons, recording and dance studios, design workshops and more.
The project will offer a net-zero carbon building, with community benefits including a 200-seat theatre space, a coffee shop and flexible meeting spaces. The initiative also meets Welsh Government’s ‘Town Centre First’ policy for public investment.
The campus is in a highly sustainable location in the town centre, close to bus and train stations. In line with the National Planning Policy, the council will be taking measures to take advantage of this location and will promote active travel, as well as the use of sustainable means of transport.
Simon Pirotte, Principal and CEO of Bridgend College, said: “This is an exciting and important milestone in our ambition to deliver a sustainable twenty-first century learning and skills centre in the heart of the county borough.
“It is an ambitious and complex project, representing a substantial investment into the regeneration of Bridgend town centre. The new campus will provide a diverse range of training, apprenticeships, up-skilling, and higher-level skills development to support businesses and the economy here in Wales.”
The location of the new campus promises to contribute significantly to the economy of Bridgend town centre - daily student and staff footfall in the town will most certainly boost local businesses.
With its close proximity to Pen-y-Bont train station and bus station, there are considerable opportunities to promote active travel and the use of public transport to the site, helping us to reach our net-zero carbon target.
We are hugely excited by this development and what it will offer to Bridgend town centre, as well as the wider county borough area.Councillor Rhys Goode, Cabinet Member for Housing, Planning and Regeneration