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Populous overhauls HOK’s Cardiff area design after materials prices soar


The architect, which designed Tottenham Hotspur stadium and Cardiff’s Principality Stadium, has changed HOK’s 2022 daring ‘lump of coal’ area with a smaller, extra rectangular, and lighter-coloured design impressed by the Welsh mountains.

Cardiff Council planning committee authorised the brand new design – for developer Robertson Property, US ticket operator Reside Nation, and Oak View Group sports activities and leisure traders –  on 19 October, topic to circumstances and a Part 106 authorized settlement.

The committee’s 10 councillors voted unanimously in favour of the scheme, with no abstentions.

Populous has shrunk the peak, width, and size of the sector by 6.5m, 9.53m, and 14m respectively in its ‘compact’ new design, lowering the venue’s capability from 17,000 to fifteen,348.

It additionally encompasses a lighter color palette designed to be extra sympathetic to surrounding buildings (together with the Wales Millennium Centre), with a bronze-coloured aluminium façade and light-weight gold soffit.

New architectural detailing features a ‘swoop’ on the sector’s southern façade, and elevated glazing on its east and west-facing elevations to create two arches on every (14m and 8m excessive), which can be illuminated for occasions.

The brand new area will sit 4m south of the initially proposed place, on a part of Cardiff’s present County Corridor automobile park in Atlantic Wharf throughout the Cardiff Bay space, which has been present process ongoing regeneration for greater than 30 years.

In accordance with Wales On-line, inflation had despatched the development price of the unique design spiralling from an estimated £180 million, to £280 million.

In a design and entry assertion submitted for the brand new design in July this 12 months, Populous wrote: ‘The proposed adjustments to the sector have arisen as a results of the worldwide financial setting and related elevated materials prices because the scheme was consented.’

The agency stated a ‘full assessment’ of the proposals with the shopper led to the overhaul of the venture to realize ‘higher price certainty’.

Cardiff’s planning committee was instructed the venue has ‘misplaced capability however gained versatility in what may be supplied’, with a brand new versatile seating or standing area at its centre.

The design adjustments proved well-liked amongst councillors, together with the scheme’s extra muted color scheme.

A brand new 180-room Travelodge lodge proposed to sit down alongside the sector and substitute an present Travelodge on the location has additionally been modified as a part of the brand new designs, to cut back materials prices.

A planning utility for the unique design by HOK was submitted in January 2022, and was granted full planning permission by Cardiff Council in February 2023.

The brand new area is a part of a 13.5ha mixed-used masterplan masterplan for Cardiff Bay, which was authorised alongside the unique area design in February. 

The masterplan for the world between the historic Atlantic Wharf to the east and Wales Millennium Centre and Mermaid Quay to the south is ready to supply 890 properties (20 per cent inexpensive), 1,090 lodge mattress areas, 19,500m² employment floorspace, 27,500m² leisure floorspace, and 12,310m² retail floorspace.

Populous is working in a staff alongside Arup, WSP engineers, HOK Architects, and Turner & Townsend consultancy on the sector – all of that are concerned within the wider masterplanning venture.

The AJ contacted Populous and Arup however each declined to remark.

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