The new student accommodation block will dominate the skyline of Cardiff as seen from Penarth

The new student accommodation block will dominate the skyline of Cardiff as seen from Penarth

The tallest building in Wales will soon become part of the vista of Cardiff enjoyed every day from Penarth residents looking out over Cardiff Bay towards the capital city.

An artist's impression of the new building (Rio/Watkin Jones)

An artist’s impression of the new building (Rio/Watkin Jones)

Cardiff Council has given the green light for the erection of a giant 42-storey, 433 foot high tower which will dominate the city skyline . It will be built on derelict land near Customhouse Street – on land opposite the Golden Cross pub but will be seen from miles away.

Cardiff  highest building was once the Hodge Building in Newport Road ( now an hotel), which was later eclipsed by the Greyfriars building, the 78-metre tall BT block and the 80-metre tall Capital Tower . The new building will easily tower over them all and make a marked difference to the outlook from Penarth.

The North Wales development firm Watkin Jones is behind the scheme along with Rio Architects. T

Some councillors however didn’t like the look of it  . Cllr Elizabeth Clark  said it was certainly no Eiffel Tower or Gherkin or Shard. There was nothing exceptional about it and the grey colour made it look dark and gloomy.

Cllr Iona Gordon was concerned about 450 students who will be housed in it  “like factory chickens” . She thought it would be  “oppressive”.

Glyn Watkin Jones, Group Chairman of the developers – the  Watkin Jones Group –  says  “As the Group Chairman of the oldest construction company in Wales, and the eighth generation of the family business myself, I am delighted to have the opportunity to promote and develop a landmark ‘tower’ within an excellent location in Cardiff.  This will add to the ever increasing height of buildings in Cardiff, a marker of the success and vibrancy of the city.”

Under a Section 106 agreement the council stands to receive  £500,000 for public works.

About NewsNet

Penarth Daily News email address . Penarth Daily News is an independent free on-line fair and balanced news service published by NewsNet Ltd covering the town of Penarth in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales, UK. All our news items are based on the information we receive or discover at the time of publication and are published on the basis that they are accurate to the best of our knowledge and belief at that time. Comments posted on the site by commentators reflect their opinions and are not necessarily shared, endorsed or supported by Penarth Daily News.
This entry was posted in Penarth Daily News. Bookmark the permalink.


  1. This will be Wale’s tallest building and its… Student Accommodation! That sounds a bit weird to me. Where’s Welsh industry in all this? Where’s the Welsh equivalent of Trump Tower?

  2. des lloyd says:

    I understand the need for such developments and more are needed, but the design of this particular building is VERY average.

  3. Ian Perry says:

    Architects are extremely competitive when it come to building big, tall and extremely UGLY buildings in Cardiff. Some of the more recent buildings are already showing deterioration on their external surfaces.

  4. Fiona Whitfield says:

    Wonder if youl be able to see it from Westonsuper-mare as on a clear day, I saw the golden welsh office building, from there.

    • des lloyd says:

      Yes you will, it’s amazing what you can through the telescope at the end of the pier!

    • Tim Hughes says:

      Did you know you can see Glastonbury Tor from Cliff Hill Penarth?

      • des lloyd says:

        That are many parts of the Mendips where Cardiff can be seen and there are many places on the South Wales coast where parts of my home town of Glastonbury can be seen, the Tor especially.

      • des lloyd says:

        When I was younger and my vision was better, I would often walk along the Cliff Path and on clear days I could easily make out Badgerline buses on route to Sand Bay, passing the pier. In those days they were easier to spot in their yellow and green livery! Lol, sad or what? It made feel a bit home sick.

      • Fiona Whitfield says:

        I love trying to make out Weston pier from the viewing platform- but im not very good at getting my bearings unless I see a pasific building so this will be good.

      • ChristOnABike says:

        Last year, while walking along the coast path, I realised I could see Glastonbury Tor from outside the Captain’s Wife. I was amazed but doubted myself until I was able to check and confirm it on a map on returning home. Wonderful.

  5. anne says:

    Erection of tallest building? Indeed a phallic symbol and a monument to Cardiff labour’s Cllr Michael Michael, chair of planning cmte & small time property developer, vanity project. A blot on the landscaped for the rest of us.

  6. Jonnyoneye says:

    It is possible to make tall buildings such as this look different and something a bit special, just look at the vast variety on show in places like Abu Dhabi and Dubai, but I suppose that you must have the money to do it the first place and a local council that is not frightened to approve such structures, instead of what they do approve, like this building and the outstanding block of what resembles council flats with bent scaffolding and cladding on the top, that people refer to as the St David’s Hotel !

  7. AK says:

    The big question is will it have 450 parking places to encourage another 450 cars a day into central Cardiff, or will it have zero parking places to discourage students from having cars.

    After all, they will be poor students who can’t afford cars after paying their fees, correct ?

  8. Christopher David says:

    Students! I heard Labour were taking over the top floor. Well They do Lord it over us.

Comments are closed.