County Hall, Cardiff
Design and construction
The building was designed by J.R.C. Bethell, the County Architect for South Glamorgan, and built 1986-7. This was at a time when the surrounding area consisted mainly of post-industrial dereliction. Hence the construction of the new building has been described in Buildings of Wales: Glamorgan as a "remarkable gesture of faith [by] the South Glamorgan County Council". It is seen as representative of a new form of civic building that does not dominate its surroundings by its size, or formal language, to the extent that it could "even [be] a deliberate abregation of the arrogant assertiveness of the late C19, expressed across the water".
The building is generally three storeys in height, but rises to four and five storeys in places. The distinctive shallow pitch roofs are of black slate. In plan the building is formed around a central courtyard.
Occupants and function
The accommodation includes the main Council Chamber and several committee rooms.
County Hall is also marketed as a venue for conferences, weddings and other events. It boasts an in-house catering team, a large bar for refreshments and function suites to accommodate up to 300 people.
In September 2007, former Council chief executive Byron Davies unveiled plans aimed at massive efficiency improvements and bringing in additional funding, which could include selling County Hall, the Cardiff Heliport and up to 40% of Cardiff Bus.
As at the end of 2009 no specific proposals to implement these ideas had been brought forward by the Council.
In 2013 the sale and demolition of County Hall was again raised, as part of Cardiff Council's plans to reduce their property commitments. It was suggested an indoor arena and convention centre could be built on the site.
- Newman, J. The Buildings of Wales: Glamorgan University of Wales Press (1995), p.266
- Newman, J. The Buildings of Wales: Glamorgan University of Wales Press (1995), p.263
- County Hall website Weddings: A Venue For All Occasions (Retrieved 2011-09-14)
- Cardiff Council Strategic Estates Office Locations (Retrieved 2011-09-14)
- County Hall website Floor Plans (Retrieved 2011-09-14)
- Wales Online (article from South Wales Echo) The Big Picture: Cardiff council camera control room Jan 7, 2011 (Retrieved 2011-09-15)
- Next stop: The great big sell-off of Cardiff Bus South Wales Echo - 6 September 2007
- Peter Law, Cardiff council considers replacing County Hall with new HQ, WalesOnline, 8 March 2013. Retrieved 2013-05-03.
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