News that plans for Cardiff’s bus station may have to go back to the drawing board is disastrous for Cardiff’s reputation and its environment, Cardiff’s Lib Dems have said.
Original plans for the building to host private rented flats and office space may not materialise, with student accommodation occupying the space instead. If so, a new planning application would be required, adding further delay to an already overdue project.
“This is becoming farcical,” said Cllr Joe Boyle, leader of the Lib Dems on Cardiff Council. “Two years ago, Labour’s cabinet member said the bus station should be open by the end of 2017. That is clearly unachievable.
“Large sums of public money have now been spent and, with the council struggling to deliver frontline services, people will want to know their money has been spent wisely.
“When I challenged Russell Goodway in Council this week about when the bus station would be delivered his complacent reply was ‘Only time will tell’.
“That sort of cavalier attitude sends entirely the wrong message to business and residents.”
The bus station plans have been dogged with controversy since they were first revealed. There are fears that it will be too small, that it won’t join up with the train station in a truly integrated way and that its original bold design has been watered down.
“For an administration that is committed to a so-called ’50 – 50 modal split’ between public and private transport, this is hugely embarrassing,” said Cllr Emma Sandrey, the Lib Dem spokesperson on transport.
“Catching a bus from the city centre is a chaotic mess. Furthermore, the impact on our environment, with buses sitting at temporary stops, contributing to the city’s worsening congestion problems is bad for the health of the city and its residents.”