Councillor fights to save historic park

8 December 2017

Labour Councillor Owen Jones says he will fight plans to build a ten storey block of student accommodation on Howard Gardens’ Bowling Green.

The Councillor for Adamsdown said selling one of the last green areas in the ward would be a mistake. He argues the planned flats don’t bring much long term benefit to the area.

Cardiff Council are set to sell the public green space for six million pounds, making it one of the most lucrative property deals of any council in Wales.

Crosslanes, the company behind the development, say the building will free up private housing for families and young professionals.

The park at Howard Gardens has been a public space since 1890 when Lord Bute donated the land to the public.

The Bowling Green was built on part of the site in 1914 and was open for nearly 100 years until the council closed it to save money in 2013.

Now the plan is to use that part of the park for the new development.

A separate development of 200 student flats was built next to the park in 2015 and building materials were stored in the Bowling Green. It has never been refurbished.

Councillor Jones says the space could easily be refurbished: “Not only are we losing this open space, we’re losing it to yet more student accommodation. We’ve got lots of money from all the student accommodation built already. That’s why we have the money to refurbish parks like this. What’s the point in having the money but no green spaces to spend it on?”

Now he plans to challenge the planning application using Welsh laws that protect future generations.

Cardiff Council won’t comment on ongoing planning applications.

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