A MILESTONE in the multi-million pound re-development of Barry dockland has begun with Asda laying down its first brick and house builders preparing to sell.
300 jobs are set to be created by the supermarket giant which plans to start recruiting in the New Year.
The first Asda store in the Vale is set to open to customers around three months later as a pivotal part of the £230m scheme.
The Barry Waterfront Consortium – Barratt Homes, Persimmon and Taylor Wimpey – is preparing to unveil the first phase of new homes at The Quays with each developer each opening a temporary sales office at Arno Quay – opposite Morrisons.
The developers, who acquired the 100-acre site from the Welsh Government and Associated British Ports, will set out their stalls on Saturday, September 13, when they will announce the release of the first phase of homes – a mixture of various styles of two, three and four-bedroom family homes.
The first show homes are expected to be opened in early 2015.
Barratt are building 112 units, Taylor Wimpey 128 and Persimmon 138 with work starting in October.
The entire first phase - West Pond - will take around three years to complete.
The Quays, given planning approval in 2012, is expected to see the construction of around 2,000 dwellings over 10 years.
The construction phase is expected to create “1,700 person years” of employment over a nine-year build period.
The project includes a commercial district with bars, cafes, shops and the new supermarket.
The Consortium has effectively overseen the preparation of the land for handover to Asda, which appointed contractors to build their foundations, store and car park.
Work on the store began on August 29 and later phases will see improvements to community and water sports facilities, new public open spaces, a new primary school and an allocation of affordable housing.
A new road linking the town to Barry Island will be built and the project will include an £8m investment in local road improvements and environmental and sustainable transport measures.
Barry Waterfront Consortium spokesman, Richard Keogh, said: “It has already been a long journey to arrive at what is a huge milestone for this project, with the first phase of new homes at The Quays going on sale. It is such a unique site, not just in Wales, but in the UK as a whole, and it is incredible to think that what was such a significant place for trade and shipping will soon become a new community with its own identity.”
Mr Keogh added: “The Quays represents a significant investment in the town and the region, but more than that, it can make a positive difference to the lives of people who live and work in Barry, as well as adding a new dimension to the tourism offer. The new Barry Island Link Road will not only join two communities together but, along with new walking, cycling and public transport links, can provide a solution to the Island’s traffic issues at peak visitor times, as well as ensuring that the new homes and facilities at The Quays will be readily accessible.”
An Asda spokesman added it was pleased to start work on a new 32,000 sq ft superstore in Barry.
He said: “We will soon be able to offer local people and new residents of The Quays, an award-winning, convenient and affordable shopping experience, as well as bringing around 300 new jobs and wider benefits to the community.
“The Barry superstore will be our first in the Vale of Glamorgan and will feature a number of environmentally friendly features.
We hope to be starting our recruitment operation very early in the New Year, in preparation for opening our doors to customers around three months later.”
For details, visit www.thequaysbarry.co.uk