An infrastructure investment programme worth more than £110m to help revitalise town centres has been launched in Pontypridd.
Housing and Regeneration Minister Rebecca Evans announced £10m of funding for the town’s Taff Vale development, the first project to get underway as part of the Welsh Government’s Building for the Future programme.
Building for the Future will regenerate town centres and surrounding areas by refurbishing or redeveloping derelict or under-used land and buildings and bringing them back to life. The multi-million pound programme, supported by £38m from the European Regional Development Fund and £16m from the Welsh Government’s own targeted match fund, will support business growth, create employment and increase footfall in town centres. This builds on the work of the Ministerial Taskforce for the South Wales Valleys and the priorities highlighted in the Our Valleys, Our Future delivery plan, including a commitment to close the employment gap between the South Wales Valleys and the rest of Wales.
The investment from the Welsh Government includes £7m of EU funding and means that site of the former Taff Vale Shopping Centre site in Pontypridd town centre will be transformed to create three distinctive buildings. These will house office space as well as community facilities, including a library and gym. The site has been derelict for many years, and the development will create a vibrant new quarter in the centre of the town.
Rebecca Evans, who recently joined the Valleys Taskforce, visited the site to see how the development is progressing. She said:
“The Taff Vale project demonstrates how we are meeting our Valleys Taskforce ambitions to create jobs, boost the construction industry and revitalise town centres. Transport for Wales, the next rail franchise and South Wales Metro operator, will be based in the development. It will transform the centre of Pontypridd and is currently the largest single development project in the town. It’s exciting to see these fantastic buildings start to take shape.
“Through Building for the Future we are supporting local authorities and private and third sector partners to acquire, refurbish or redevelop unused buildings and land close to town and city centres. They will identify how these buildings could be used, including for commercial, public sector and residential purposes. We will work with local authorities and building users to target and offer employment and training opportunities to people seeking work.
“Building for the Future will re-energise our town centres and create some bright opportunities for people and businesses up and down the country. It’s great to see this work is already underway in Pontypridd.”
In addition to Welsh Government and EU funding, schemes supported through the Building for Future programme will be match funded from a range of public, third and private sector sources.