BBC Wales HQ at bus station site

By Huw Thomas
BBC Wales arts and media correspondent

  • Published
Media caption,
The new BBC HQ is due to be ready by 2018

The site of Cardiff bus station is set to undergo a major regeneration with the announcement that BBC Cymru Wales is to move its headquarters there.

The corporation's current HQ in Llandaff will shut and staff will relocate to a new building in Central Square in 2018.

BBC Cymru Wales director Rhodri Talfan Davies said the location was a chance to be closer to audiences.

The ageing infrastructure of the current HQ is the reason for the move.

The new 150,000 sq ft (13,936 sq m) building relies upon the wider Capital Square development around Cardiff Central train station to progress as planned.

The Capital Square project, to be delivered by Rightacres Property, include proposals to relocate the bus station.

As well housing the existing BBC staff and services based at Llandaff, S4C has announced in principle that it plans to share some broadcasting services with the BBC at the new centre.

Mr Talfan Davies said the new broadcast centre promised to be "an exciting new home in a remarkable location right at the heart of the action".

"The public rightly demand the best from the BBC - and this development will at last give our programming teams the tools, the technology and the facilities to serve our audiences for decades to come," he said.

Image caption,
The new building will be in front of Cardiff Central train station
Image caption,
An estimated 50,000 visitors will be allowed to visit the building every year
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The project will create hundreds of construction jobs
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The new HQ will be half the size of the current building

Broadcasting House, and the BBC's Ty Oldfield opposite, have both been for sale since autumn 2013.

It is understood that the sale of the land will be concluded in the coming months, and will help fund the new development.

First Minister Carwyn Jones said the new building would provide a state-of-the-art headquarters on a par with those in Glasgow, Salford and London.

"It is particularly important for the people of Wales, which requires public service broadcasting that properly represents their dynamic, devolved nation, with a thriving political democracy and creative content industry," he said.

Cardiff council leader Phil Bale, said the new building would fast-track its plans for the bus station area, which currently does not give the best impression of the city.

"This type of investment comes around once in a generation. It boosts Cardiff's emergence as a leading centre for creative industries in Europe," he said.

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