Swansea Council in the UK has announced that it will look for a new developer to regenerate the city centre after Hammerson pulled out of the project.
Hammerson and Urban Splash had signed a co-operation agreement with the council in 2008 for a £1bn scheme featuring a 600,000ft² shopping centre with 1,000 residential units.
Urban Splash had withdrawn from the joint venture in 2009 when the residential element of the scheme was scrapped.
The council and Hammerson have confirmed that they will not extend their co-operation agreement and Swansea will start looking for a new development partner soon.
Hammerson, which owns the city’s Parc Tawe retail and leisure site, will retain its presence in Swansea and will continue to work with the council on developing Parc Tawe.
A planning application, which is scheduled to be submitted for the site, will feature a new anchor tenant, new restaurants, an environmental upgrade and better pedestrian links with the city centre.
The council said negotiations are also underway between several high street names to become the anchor tenant at the former St David’s Shopping Centre and Oldway House sites now owned by it and cleared for redevelopment.
A spokesperson for Hammerson said, "The decision not to renew the co-operation agreement with Swansea Council is a mutual one, but through our ownership and management of Parc Tawe we remain a significant investor in Swansea and we will continue to work with the council."
Swansea Council cabinet member for regeneration Nick Bradley said the council has been working with Hammerson for some time but it’s become clear their model for redeveloping the city centre has had to change due to the current economic climate.
"The traditional retail model isn’t working so we need to find a different solution and the time is right for the Council to work with other developers to achieve our ambition and deliver a model that works for Swansea," Bradley said.
Bradley noted that the council’s priority is to ensure the redevelopment of the city centre retains and builds on Swansea’s identity and culture.
"We have already made significant investments in the city centre, including a £2m project to refurbish Swansea Market and the purchase and demolition of the St David’s Shopping Centre and Oldway House sites alongside the Welsh Government," Bradley said.
Image: Hammerson and Urban Splash had signed a co-operation agreement with the council in 2008 for a scheme featuring a 600,000ft² shopping centre. Photo: Courtesy of Swansea Council.