Mountain Ash - Guto square

The Council has received full planning permission to redevelop Rhos Square (known locally as Guto Square) in Mountain Ash Town Centre as part of a regeneration scheme.

The latest development will contribute to increasing the number of parking spaces, and improving public facilities and the visual appearance of the area – by removing an eyesore section of derelict land.

On April 4, the Planning and Development Committee approved the Council’s application. The proposals will increase the number of short-stay parking spaces to 30 from the 23 currently at Henry Street North Car Park – along with improvements to the toilet block and public square, introducing decorative block paving, a small landscaped area along Oxford Street and six public benches.  

These plans include utilising a derelict parcel of land to the north of Rhos Square. The land, in private ownership, has remained unused for many years – and the Council will now move to the next stage of its compulsory purchase.

Under the proposals, this land would be resurfaced along with the current pedestrian access between the existing car park and Oxford Street – to create 15 new parking spaces. The current Henry Street North Car Park would also be resurfaced and reconfigured to provide 15 parking spaces and five cycle stands. Public footways surrounding the site would be upgraded.

An Officer report to Thursday’s Committee meeting recommended the application for approval to Members. It highlighted that there has been no interest in developing the derelict plot of land – while the wider scheme would help alleviate current on-street parking problems in the Town Centre, along with improving the vitality and visitor experience of the retail area.

Councillor Andrew Morgan, Leader of Rhondda Cynon Taf Council and local ward member, said: “I’m very pleased that the Committee has approved the Council’s planning application relating to Rhos Square – which will provide additional parking, a more vibrant street scene and improved public facilities, while bringing a derelict piece of land into use.

“Improving Town Centres is an important aspect of the Council’s Corporate Plan, and there are a number of ongoing initiatives in Rhondda Cynon Taf. This includes the Town Centre Maintenance Grant, which is now helping businesses improve their property fronts in six towns after its recent extension, with 100 projects approved so far – while free WiFi will be rolled out in our Town Centres over the next year.

“During November 2018, the Council hosted a public exhibition for improvement plans in Mountain Ash Town Centre. Along with the Rhos Square project, the wider proposal incorporated the development of a new Primary Care Centre and the redevelopment of 1-4 Oxford Buildings – and these plans were widely supported.

“Following the Planning and Development Committee’s decision on Thursday to grant planning permission for the Rhos Sqaure project, I’m looking forward to seeing further progress made on this important scheme in the near future.”

Posted on Wednesday 10th April 2019

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