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Cardiff Retail

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LocalLurker

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostThu Jun 27, 2019 10:10 pm

Are they planning to build a hotel in some of the space they are planning to clear out of Howells?
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Glenn

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostFri Jun 28, 2019 12:53 am

Interesting plans. Wharton st has some great looking facades and if this kicks off a bit of a revival for the street I can only see that as being a good thing. I’m weary of that tower though, I wander how much of this hinges on approval of a tower.

Am I right I’m thinking from the plans that the 1931 corner block will be disconnected from the older HOF building on the ground, but be retained above? I’m wondering how much space HOF is planning on retaining and if they will lose the ground floors but continue to occupy the first floor etc. HOF just use their Wharton st windows as billboards, so bringing them into use as shops would bring some life to the area
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Cwlcymro

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostFri Jun 28, 2019 10:50 pm

Glenn wrote:Am I right I’m thinking from the plans that the 1931 corner block will be disconnected from the older HOF building on the ground, but be retained above? I’m wondering how much space HOF is planning on retaining and if they will lose the ground floors but continue to occupy the first floor etc. HOF just use their Wharton st windows as billboards, so bringing them into use as shops would bring some life to the area


It will be totally disconnected from the Wharton Street block, but only disconnected on the ground floor from rest of St Mary's. They are hoping to eventually disconnect the 3rd floor connection with rest of St Mary's but that's not part of this application. The 1st floor connection will remain as that was built in 1931 with the rest of the block.

By the look of it HOF has totally vacated the 1931 block and handed it back to the landlord. They are now planning to clear all internal divisions on each floor and then find new tenants.
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Glenn

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostSat Jun 29, 2019 3:22 am

Cwlcymro wrote:
The 1st floor connection will remain as that was built in 1931 with the rest of the block.


Ah I see. If HOF are completely out of the corner building then that makes more sense. Only question then is what would happen with that original 1931 first floor link. Presumably access to HOF would have to be blocked off to the new tenants of the first floor of the corner block. I hope it's not just a case of putting up a brick wall on the HOF side. Would be a shame and would be nice to see it kept as a functional part of the building.

If presumably the upper floors of the corner block become apartments (which I imagine they will), if they could use that link as part of the residents entrance to the apartments, maybe taking a small section of HOF first floor on the other side of the link, and have stairs/lift down then to the new courtyard (similar to Hayes Apartments). Will be interesting to see what comes up in the future plans.
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Cwlcymro

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostSat Jun 29, 2019 12:40 pm

Glenn wrote:Ah I see. If HOF are completely out of the corner building then that makes more sense. Only question then is what would happen with that original 1931 first floor link. Presumably access to HOF would have to be blocked off to the new tenants of the first floor of the corner block. I hope it's not just a case of putting up a brick wall on the HOF side. Would be a shame and would be nice to see it kept as a functional part of the building.


I haven't been in HOF for a very very long time, but from the documents it's not clear whether the 1st floor is in use by HOF in the St Mary's building? This is what it says about that building:

Much of the upper floors are now out of use. At 2nd and 3rd floor
levels there are spinal corridors giving access to a series of stores and
offices including living accommodation for more senior staff. At 3rd floor
level there was also accommodation for Howell and his family and staff
including some ornate fireplaces. Corridors on these floors are
characterised by 4-panel doors with overlights and boarded dados and some
have windows out on to lightwells to the east. There is a slight change in
level at the division between the earlier and later parts of this block and the
corridor to the northern part is slightly wider than that to the south
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sebcity

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostTue Jul 09, 2019 7:41 am

Appears spectacle retailer Ollie Quinn has closed its major spot on 89 Queen Street. Shame as I thought this was a reasonably priced retailer!

Also appears their store in Bath closed a while ago as well.
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RandomComment

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostWed Nov 20, 2019 6:32 pm

https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/house-of-fraser-howells-cardiff-17288541

Seems like a pretty damning list of past poor maintenance by HoF and their previous landlords, which means big problems in the here and now for the current owners.

I think what will happen is that the current owners will end up taking a big hit financially, and may need to sell on at a big loss. I would expect the development value to still exceed the cost of works - its just the current property/land is now effectively worthless.

Still at the very least it means big delays to any transformation plans, and the potential for a large and prominent building to sit empty and decaying for a considerable period of time.

Also, shouldn't the (newish) owners have done better surveying and due diligence on the purchase? How could these issues only be coming to light now?
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Bishop84

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostWed Nov 20, 2019 11:19 pm

RandomComment wrote:https://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/house-of-fraser-howells-cardiff-17288541

Seems like a pretty damning list of past poor maintenance by HoF and their previous landlords, which means big problems in the here and now for the current owners.

I think what will happen is that the current owners will end up taking a big hit financially, and may need to sell on at a big loss. I would expect the development value to still exceed the cost of works - its just the current property/land is now effectively worthless.

Still at the very least it means big delays to any transformation plans, and the potential for a large and prominent building to sit empty and decaying for a considerable period of time.

Also, shouldn't the (newish) owners have done better surveying and due diligence on the purchase? How could these issues only be coming to light now?


Wouldn't be at all surprised for the owners to try use this report as an excuse to enable a radical redevelopment of the site. Weren't they previously proposing knocking down parts of the centre of the building to make a hotel tower?
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DavidH71

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostThu Nov 21, 2019 12:03 am

Surely anyone looking to redevelop would expect to replace the electrics, plumbing and fire systems anyway, simply due to their age? Asbestos is a bit more of a worry. If anything, this report highlights the need to crack on with redevelopment sooner rather than later.
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Karl

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Re: Cardiff Retail

PostThu Nov 21, 2019 3:14 pm

I'm not sure why we are surprised at this? Can anyone remember any sort of work going on at Howells in the last 30 years? I also think it won't come as that much of a surprise to the owners who surely would have been aware of many of the problems through a reasonably thorough survey?

I think that any redevelopment would strip everything back to the brick anyway (other than those internal parts that may be listed) particularly as it is proposed to carry out a major configuration of the internal space. Unless there are serious structural issues it's pretty much as you were isn't it?

I agree that the owners may use this as a reason to push through more radical redevelopment plans, particularly if they argue that the tower element is crucial to making the project pay for itself....
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