Statement from Cindy Harris, Head of Design Review, Design Commission for Wales, on the Cardiff International Sports Village Waterfront Scheme

Cindy Harris said: “The Commission welcomes all developments of good quality that can help drive economic growth, and we recognise the potential for a development on this site. However, while we welcome the ambition of the project, there are several fundamental issues with the current proposals which we feel must be addressed. These are set out in our full Design Review report which is publicly available and can be found on our website (

“The review was attended by two members of the architectural team and the relevant Local Planning Authority officer and the observations made during the review meeting and subsequent report are intended to assist the developers and architects behind the scheme to maximise its full potential and have a positive impact on the economy and public realm.

“We recognise the constraints that architects must work within, and we highlight issues outside of the scheme’s architecture, which are significant issues in their own right, such as the scheme’s energy and sustainability strategy, access and transport, the varying levels proposed and its relationship with the neighbouring Cardiff International Pool.

“If the developers wish to press ahead with their application without addressing these, then in our view the success of the scheme – its commercial viability, quality and value – is compromised.

“We would obviously welcome any further consultation on the project should the developers wish to make revisions to the proposals, otherwise we will follow with interest how Cardiff Council’s planning committee take the scheme forward.”