TRANSPORT HUB: Plans for Porth set to go before councillors
Plans for a new transport hub in Porth are set to go before councillors for approval.
An application for the construction of the new single storey transport hub with a link to an overhead railway bridge including the development of a new seven bay bus station and apron is to go before Rhondda Cynon Taf Council’s planning committee on Thursday, March 11.
The proposals would create a bus and rail interchange north west of the existing railway station on the site where Alec Jones Day Centre, Barclays bank and Porth Farm Surgery were before being demolished last year.
They would also see a new building which would house a waiting room, counter service, office service store, stairwell and lift area, cloak room, staff rest and toilet facilities, public toilets and baby changing area, maintenance and refuse stores and a courtyard area.
It’s part of the council’s Porth Town Centre Strategy which was approved in 2019 as part of the town’s regeneration based on its key location in the juncture between the Rhondda Fach and Fawr and as an important location for accessing services, including employment, housing and transport.
The upper floor area other than the stairwell and lift will contain non-public areas such as plant room and service areas.
An area of public open space would be included between the proposed building and the northern end of Hannah Street with planters.
There would be two entry and exit points at Porth Street and Station Street.
The Porth Street access will see “substantial improvements” the report said and the works will also involve the creation of new boundary walls around the site and a new access into the telephone exchange.
The council is working with Transport for Wales on the scheme and the project has secured joint funding from the Cardiff Capital Region City Deal and Welsh
Government’s Local Transport Fund through the Metro Plus programme through a bid by the Cardiff Capital Region Transport Authority.
There was one letter of objection from the public which said the proposals do nothing for the residents of Powell’s Place which is accessed via a single lane which it appears will be opened out for traffic.
It also said the access is already a very busy junction and asked how will residents now come and go safely on foot.
It also said noise and fumes from buses will adversely impact the local environment.
In recommending approval, planning officers said in the report: “The principle of the proposed development in planning terms is acceptable and the proposed development has the potential to deliver considerable regenerative benefits to Porth town centre and the surrounding locality.”
They later add: “The proposed development presents the opportunity to provide Porth with a much needed transport hub facility at the optimum location within the town that will help to foster its regeneration.”
The wider regeneration programme includes the development of Porth Plaza as a community hub, the redevelopment of the old Porth Junior School site and the potential for new parking areas.
Words: Anthony Lewis, Local Democracy Reporter
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