Office bid prompts planners' concerns
OFFICE block proposals for Jersey Marine have put heads in a spin at Swansea Council.
Three new office blocks have been proposed either side of Ffordd Amazon, directly east of the Amazon distribution centre.
The Welsh Government, which is behind the proposals, said the buildings would be a maximum of four storeys and employ up to 1,680 people. No occupants have been earmarked for the site as yet.
The area is already primed for more development, with Swansea University's Science and Innovation Campus, off Fabian Way, and the nearby Coed Darcy urban village both under construction.
Swansea councillors will debate the matter at a meeting tomorrow, although it will be Neath Port Talbot Council which will give the final say-so.
Swansea's principal planning officer for major projects, David Owen, has recommended the authority objects to the plans on the grounds they might undermine city centre regeneration and create problems for Fabian Way commuters.
But Mr Owen conceded that the overall economic and social impact of the scheme for Swansea was not clear.
"The application therefore presents a dichotomy to the council," he said.
"The application provides the opportunity for a large strategic regeneration initiative at this gateway location, and will create significant new employment opportunities and transform a brownfield site at the entrance to the city."
But he added that the application did not consider the potential impact of diverting investment away from Swansea city centre — in particular the all-important retail aspirations for the St David's Shopping Centre and Quadrant area.
"In that respect it must be of concern to the council," said Mr Owen.
Council highways officers said they felt the office blocks could impact on the Jersey Marine roundabout and Fabian Way-A48 junction, both of which "show overcapacity in future years".
The report added that Coed Darcy, which is expected to deliver 4,000 new homes, was estimated to be 70 per cent complete in 2031.