Talbot Green New Town Centre
The new Talbot Green Town Centre is a Joint Venture project between Valad and the Welsh Government. The site is located in Rhondda Cynon Taff and is generally situated on brownfield land which formerly housed a number of heavy industrial manufacturing plants. This retail led mixed-use redevelopment includes a replacement Leekes department store and an additional, new, department store, Sainsbury’s superstore, multiple retail units in ‘shopping streets’, multi-screen cinema, hotel, offices, civic use, residential dwellings, cafés and restaurants.
The Town Centre includes a new southern distributor road, multiple points of access as well as three new multi-story and one surface car park. There is also a Transport Hub which prioritizes the movement of public transport and shared cycleways / footways that promote safe routes to and through the development from the neighbouring residential areas, existing shopping parks and school.
Vectos were appointed by the JV consortium to promote the site during the Local Development Plan process. The site is included in the 2011 LDP as a strategically important site with a ‘Southern Strategy Area Policy SSA8’ to support it. Vectos provided transport planning advice throughout the Masterplan stages and supported the outline planning application with a detailed Transport Assessment and comprehensive Travel Plan, which formed part of an Environmental Statement.
The introduction of a new Town Centre required a different approach to distinguish it from a conventional retail park. Town Centres typically have multiple land uses, accessed by a variety of modes and serving a wide catchment. A number of car parks and access routes along with promoting alternative travel modes helped minimise the traffic impact on the Strategic Highway Network. Extensive micro-simulation models were used to demonstrate the traffic effect and the proposed highway mitigation measures. As part of the design process Vectos undertook car park design, barrier and ramp capacity and parking accumulation assessments, vehicle routing and a real time ‘active’ car park management signage strategy. Assessments were also undertaken to appraise the design and capacity of the four service yards to ensure that the town centre could function efficiently once operational.
Vectos was involved in extensive post-application negotiations which ultimately secured no objection from the highway authority and favourable highway and transportation contributions.