Wrexham Council has announced that plans are under proposition to continue development to the gateway project, which will see improvements to key sites and transport infrastructure in the West of the city.
The aim of the gateway project is to develop one of the most important corridors into the city, the area around Mold Road, with upgrades to transport links coming alongside improvements that will help to drive further investment. Rail, bus, and car links are to be upgraded, as well as new office, hotel, and conference spaces being introduced. Wrexham AFC’s Racecourse Ground is also to be developed as part of the plans, following investment from it’s famous new ownership that has seen the club and city propelled into global news.
Increased footfall into the city will be of benefit to businesses, with the redevelopments to Wrexham General Station expected to bring approximately 60,000 extra visitors into the area. This will be complimented by the completion of The Racecourse Ground’s new kop, which is anticipated to expand the capacity of the stadium to around 16,000.
Funding will come from an approximate 50/50 split of private and public investment, with the council hoping that this will drive further investment as plans move forward. The council’s Executive Board saw a report on the project on the 18th April and were asked for approval, with confirmation allowing a substantial amount of a £25 million grant from the Welsh Government being reallocated to the project on the west side of the city. With the reallocation of the funding meaning that less money will be available for the eastern side of the project, the council has confirmed that it will apply for further external funding, with a minimum of £8 million being committed.
The council were successful in a bid for the first round of levelling up funding, with £13.3 million being committed to improvements surrounding the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. When the second phase of the Levelling Up Fund was opened, the council then reapplied for funding, with the hopes of securing investment that would go towards the gateway project. Unfortunately, this was unsuccessful, however these new funding plans will be a boost to the community.
Leader of Wrexham Council, Councillor Mark Pritchard, said:
“The Wrexham Gateway is a massive project that will transform one of main corridors into the city.
“It’s ambitious, but we need to be ambition if we want to fulfil our potential as Wales’ newest city, and as the home of Welsh football.
“A key element is the development of the new kop. The incredible things happening at the club are propelling Wrexham onto a global stage, and football is bringing communities together, boosting local pride and helping to attract visitors and investment.
“So helping to secure finance to develop the Racecourse – so it can once again host international fixtures – is hugely important for Wrexham, and the benefits will be felt far beyond the football pitch.”
With the delivery of both the eastern and western sides of the gateway project, it is estimated that 732 new jobs are to be created, as well as bringing a gross value added impact of £54.1 million. This would result in a tripling of the money being invested, with £3 of public benefit being seen for every £1 that was invested into the project.
This project is being supported fully by the partners of Wrexham Gateway, with these including the Welsh Government, Wrexham AFC, Transport for Wales and Wrexham Glyndwr University.