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Last Updated: Thursday, 9 June, 2005, 10:51 GMT 11:51 UK
30m scheme for old store site
Artist's impression
Developer Thurleigh Estates said the complex could open in 2007
Swansea's former David Evans store is to be demolished to make way for a new shopping complex in the city centre.

The 30m scheme would see the landmark replaced by a glass and steel development housing fashion stores.

David Evans was the oldest department store in the city when it closed its doors for the last time in January.

An exhibition of plans for the site is being staged on Friday and Saturday with the aim of securing planning permission by the end of the year.

Swansea Council dropped the more ambitious 125m Castle Quays scheme to redevelop a much larger area of the city centre earlier this year after several false starts.

The developer behind the David Evans complex, Thurleigh Estates, said its proposals were more realistic and achievable.

Former David Evans department store
David Evans shut its doors for the last time in January

The old store would be razed to the ground and the new complex, housing three major fashion stores and small shops, would be extended out into Princess Way.

Spokesman Charles St George said: "What we are trying to do is develop something that is deliverable and something that the retailers want."

He said the company had agreed terms in principle with the anchor store and other retailers so effectively 45% of the space available was already taken.

"It shows the interest in the city and more importantly none of these retailers are represented in Swansea at present."

The developers aim to submit the plans this summer and hope to have planning consent in the autumn.

Retail parks

"If all went well then we could commence demolition early next year, start construction about a year from now with the retailers open in time for autumn 2007," added Mr St George.

Traders and tourism leaders in Swansea have been calling for greater investment in the city centre for some time.

Geoff Haden, chairman of Tourism Swansea, labelled the city centre a 'disgrace' in his latest news letter.

He said out-of-town retail parks were hitting the heart of the city and investment was need to reverse the trend.

"More than other cities in the country Swansea suffers from the Tesco Syndrome - apparent domination of the planning process by the major supermarket chains who have fronted the development of mini town centres ringing the city".

Council leader Chris Holley said the David Evans scheme was a major step forward in rejuvenating Swansea.

"I hope people take the opportunity to view these exciting proposals," he added.

The public exhibition take place between 1000BST and 1700BST on Friday and 1000BST and 1400BST Saturday at the city centre partnership offices on Plymouth Street.


SEE ALSO:
City's oldest store closes
15 Jan 05 |  South West Wales
Swansea to get 125m facelift
23 Oct 01 |  Wales


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