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Welsh university development raises conservation body hackles

Words: Roger Milne
Cardiff University

Cardiff University’s proposed multi-million pound five-storey Centre for Student Life project - a scheme that involves plans to demolish three Victorian villas - has triggered a fierce row over its impact on the city’s Cathays Park Conservation Area.

Nerys Lloyd-Pierce, chairman of Cardiff Civic Society, has made it clear that the body is objecting to the proposals on visual and design grounds.

“The Cardiff Civic Society has no objection to a new Centre for Student Life in principle, however, the current design is far too overbearing for its location” she said.

“Aesthetically, the proposed scheme jars with neighbouring buildings due to its size and the fact that it fronts Park Place, rather than being set back from it.”

She also said the proposal was in breach of the city council's commitment to protecting Cardiff’s built heritage and ignored a recent ruling by a planning inspector over the importance of maintaining the Victorian villas in Park Place.

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