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30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

if it's about Cardiff.. Sport, Entertainment, Transportation, Business, Development Projects, Leisure, Eating, Drinking, Nightlife, Shopping, Train Spotting! etc.. then we want it here!
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Amoore

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30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostSat Mar 26, 2016 9:21 pm

Property Week: http://www.propertyweek.com/in-depth/ma ... 29.article

NewRiver Retail is to meet City of Cardiff Council later this month to discuss plans for a tower on top of the Capitol shopping centre.

Retail asset manager NewRiver has drawn up plans for a 30-storey tower that would accommodate flats, student accommodation and a hotel above the 165,000 sq ft centre on the corner of Queen Street and Charles Street in Cardiff city centre.

NewRiver bought Capitol from the Moorfield Group in January in the knowledge that it was a centre with problems that were only getting worse.

Although the acquisition was part of a three-centre, £92.3m deal, it is believed to have cost only £22m - a price reflective of vacancies on both its two levels.

Capitol’s fate was sealed last year when H&M, the anchor tenant, trading on both levels, chose not to renew its lease. Instead, H&M consolidated its presence in Cardiff in November with its largest UK store, opening a 46,000 sq ft unit in St David’s shopping centre, half a mile west down Queen Street.

“When we bought Capitol, H&M weren’t in occupation,” says Charles Spooner, a NewRiver director.

“In fact, most of the fashion has gone down to the other end of town to St David’s. I’m glad that we have got the level of voids that we have. If the tenants were still in place, we wouldn’t have the same opportunities.”

Austin Reed has left the centre, as has Jaeger, which now relies on sales from a John Lewis concession in St David’s.

Spooner says the east end of Queen Street, which is close to many of the Cardiff University buildings, has a real buzz to it created by the student population.

And as a result, the Capitol centre has become a hub for convenience. Poundworld is three years into a 10-year lease in a shop once occupied by the failed retailer Internacionale, while easyGym occupies part of the upper level.

Next month brings the first anniversary of the reopening of Capitol’s cinema, after the Odeon vacated in 2001. Premiere Cinemas, a US company that operates cinemas in shopping centres, charges only £4 a ticket. This, says Spooner, is having an effect on Cardiff’s other cinemas.

Generally, though, Capitol has been unlucky with its tenants since Guardian Royal Exchange Properties developed and opened it in 1990. An original tenant, Virgin Megastore, later to be renamed Zavvi, the music retailer, ceased trading in 2009.

When NewRiver submits its planning application in the autumn, it will also include plans for a new entrance and a proposal to turn many of the shops that are currently empty into restaurants.
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zygoticmynci

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostTue Mar 29, 2016 10:38 am

Premiere Cinemas is British.
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Simon_SW17

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostTue Mar 29, 2016 7:06 pm

A leisure based scheme is definitely the way to go, along with a new entrance there needs to be a better internal entrance to the cinema too. Will be interesting to see the plans.
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Amoore

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 10:34 am

I've been trying to work out how they will construct a 30-storey tower and maintain the existing buildings. Surely something would have to give?

The last time a tower was proposed it was the then derelict cinema, and the plans were torn to bits by the Council who struggled to find a good word to say about any of it. http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/worst-planning-application-citys-history-2162052

Demolition of any part of the centre would impact on the access to the car park (ie render it unusable without heavy reconfiguration).
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Lyndon

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 2:52 pm

I popped into the Capitol yesterday for a quick look round, mainly because it was raining, and wow! I've driven through Detroit, which was worse, but not by much :lol:

Apart from Tesco and Poundworld the only shops surviving are ones with direct entrances on Queen Street: Phase 8, Hobbs, Pret, Boots and Halifax. The place must be 60% empty. Even the pop-ups are closing down, I didn't look upstairs but god knows what it must be like up there. Clearly, Something Must Be Done :shock:
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Ash

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 3:46 pm

Lyndon wrote: Even the pop-ups are closing down


Not out of choice, apparently. It looks like the new owners want a clean slate.

http://www.barry-today.co.uk/article.cfm?id=103203&headline=Barry%20businessman%E2%80%99s%20company%20given%20hours%20to%20quit%20Capitol%20Centre&sectionIs=news&searchyear=2016
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RandomComment

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 4:22 pm

Yeah in some instances these pop ups might actually be "costing" the centre money. For instance, if they are using only part of a unit, the centre owners might have to pay the business rates on the rest of the unit, which might outweigh the rent paid.

The new owners might have quite substantial plans here, what with the talk of a new entrance.. (ploughing through H&M perhaps?). They may want a good clear out so they can reconfigure units. I do wonder what they can possible do to fill it all though. A few restaurants - OK. But otherwise - what else? I'd imagine a mix of additional convenience outlets like hairdressers, a florist. Bet they would love to attract the Post Office from Queens Arcade!
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steppenwolf

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 4:41 pm

The only way this development will work is if the route through it provides a useful route or a shortcut - otherwise it will always be a horrible indoors diversion. Put a street diagonally through to connect to the station. Make part of that street at least outdoors so it feels like a real part of the city. And get a decent architect to do something simple and timeless on the outside so it knits properly into the street. Any tower should be over on the station side. And fingers crossed that they won't do it in white render!!! last thing Cardiff needs is another streaky brown and green tower!! :)
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Peiriannydd

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostWed Mar 30, 2016 6:19 pm

Amoore wrote:I've been trying to work out how they will construct a 30-storey tower and maintain the existing buildings. Surely something would have to give?

The last time a tower was proposed it was the then derelict cinema, and the plans were torn to bits by the Council who struggled to find a good word to say about any of it. http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/wales-news/worst-planning-application-citys-history-2162052


The only Powell Dobson scheme I know of for this site was the one below. For what it's worth, I actually liked the tower and I think if it were proposed today then the response from the council would be very different. I don't see how it's any worse than the proposed 25-storey Watkin Jones tower, which would be in a conservation zone. That said, I don't know how the council could vilify a scheme like this and then allow Ty Pont Haern to be built!

As much as I'm in favour of promoting Cardiff-based architects (and general business), this site could benefit from a London-based architect. Someone who is used to mixed schemes where you have to provide through-flow for pedestrians, usually with the added problem of tube stations. Canary Wharf is a typically example. The problem with all of that is, you usually need some sort of expensive transfer structure that developers don't want to pay for and try to get the engineers to design out with the architects, compromising access. The reality is, they'll pay for it in London but the numbers don't stack up the same in Cardiff.
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Amoore

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Re: 30-storey tower proposed for Capitol Centre

PostFri Apr 01, 2016 12:22 pm

I think anyone that's tried to get anywhere near the Capitol Centre by car during rush hour would probably question the feasibility of having such a large development with the current access available.
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