In July 2014 Cardiff Council announced that the existing bus station will close by Summer 2015. The decision on where the bus station should be relocated to and what form it should take will be made by the Council and is currently open to public consultation. There are a number of options for relocation being considered by the Council, including a new facility within the Masterplan site.
This Masterplan does not rule out any of those alternatives. Nonetheless, there are a number of good urban design principles, as well as operational and deliverability issues that endorse the Masterplan opportunity of including the new bus station on the existing site of Marland House and the NCP Marland car park, as part of a holistic approach to transportation. On major event days at the Millennium Stadium, the bus station closes and a key aspiration of the operators and the Council is to continue to be able to provide a service from the Bus Station on such occasions.
The challenge for the Masterplan will be to provide a bus station that remains operational on event days, and meets the day to day requirements of National Express and Cardiff Bus, with whom we have been consulting with during this process. This will need to include a consideration of pedestrian and vehicular access and signalised controls.
The Masterplan locates a new bus station on the site of Marland House and NCP car park. In terms of public transport integration, it is considered important that the bus station should remain in close proximity to the railway station and distances between the two, barriers and level changes should be minimised facilitating easy movement from one mode to the other.
Therefore the level change between the station and bus station site will be removed and the aspiration is that the two will function as a state of the art integrated transport hub that is bold and visionary, with features that include:
- Minimum Travel distances, level changes and gradients between modes
- Well placed real time information screens and wayfinding
- Logically and conveniently placed facilities to meet all the needs of a traveller, e.g. ticket sales, assistance points, toilets, shops and restaurants
- Safe and secure walking routes at all times of the day and night with pedestrian prioritisation where modes or activities cross each other
- Environmental protection where weather is known to be generally inclement
- Safe and secure storage facilities bicycles
- A Good quality environment for waiting and resting
- Congestion and conflict free movement
- Integrated ticket office
The precise form of this Integrated hub will be developed over coming months, with the aspiration that this will be developed in conjunction with Network Rail to help facilitate their aspirations for upgrading Central Station.