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Residents concerned over Grangetown rainwater plan

RESIDENTS remain unconvinced about the Greener Grangetown project, despite council assurances over maintenance and parking.

Cardiff Council, Natural Resources Wales and Welsh Water are investing £2 million to improve rainwater management in the area. Rainwater is currently pumped through eight miles of pipes to the Vale of Glamorgan, where it is treated and pumped out to sea.

As well as completely re-paving the roads and pavements of 12 streets next to and including the Taff Embankment, rain gardens will be built on each street to catch and clean rain water before pumping it into the river.

“The gardens are certainly a positive thing but what about the maintenance? Who will maintain the shrubs and pick the litter out of the gardens? You can see just by driving down the embankment the council has reneged on their promise to rake the leaves, which have actually blocked the drains now, so there are vast pools of water,” said Stephen Hurlstone, of Taff Terrace, Grangetown.

Leaves are left to rot near the drains on Taff Embankment, Grangetown.

Leaves are left to rot near the drains on Taff Embankment, Grangetown.

Founder of the Cardiff Rivers Group, David King, said the slack may have to be picked up by his, and other, volunteer community groups.

“Cardiff council are reducing their spend on parks and maintenance which is why groups like Keep Grangetown Tidy and Cardiff Rivers are springing up. The council needs to be mindful that people are giving their time up for free,” said Mr King.

“The theory sounds good but the issue is who is going to maintain and look after it,” he added.

A council spokesperson said: “As is stated on the Greener Grangetown website, there is an 18-month contract in place with the contractors to look after the maintenance. It will be looked after by the council’s parks department after that period for the foreseeable future.”

The council cabinet has also reassured residents about parking in Grangetown.

“Commuter parking is a significant issue for Grangetown residents so we are planning to introduce 50% residents parking on Aber Street, Abercynon Street, Bargoed Street, Clydach Street, Taff Terrace, Ystrad Street and the main stretch of Taff Embankment,” said Councillor Ramesh Patel, cabinet member for transport, planning and sustainability.

Some residents, however, remain unconvinced.

“Quite a lot of people from Corporation Road park on this street. Most houses here have about two cars,” said Emily Lowery, of Taff Terrace, Grangetown.

Mr Hurlstone agreed.

“Taff Terrace is the one street with the exception of Aber street that is two way. I don’t think that they have taken that into account. It’s just not wide enough for two cars to pass. Having this as the only way out to Corporation Road is crazy,” he said.

“Taff Embankment is absolutely chockablock full of cars so two cars cannot pass. The guys who work over the bay park here and walk, or open their boots and take out their folding bikes and cycle the rest of the way.”

Traffic often backs up on Taff Embankment, especially near traffic lights.

Traffic often backs up on Taff Embankment, especially near traffic lights.

Some residents are worried that the 50% parking plan could create other problems.

“How will people without a great deal of disposable income cope with the permit prices? Who is going to decide which 50% get the parking?” asked Mr Hurlstone.

The rainwater project starts this week with the river embankment before moving on to residential streets early next year. It is due to be completed in late 2017.

  • The Greener Grangetown project covers Aber Street, Abercynon Street, Bargoed Street, Blaenclydach Street, Coedcae Street, Clydach Street, Cymmer Street, Ferndale Street, Llanbradach Street, Taff Embankment, Taff Terrace and Ystrad Street.
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