By Alex Seabrook
THE collapse of a building firm has raised questions about the future of an unfinished 20-storey hotel by Cardiff Central train station.
A Premier Inn hotel was under construction on the corner of Custom House Street, until WRW Construction went into administration earlier this month.
Although scaffolding is still up, a public notice on the door to the construction site said the project is “currently closed”.
The building’s unfinished black cladding has become a prominent addition to the city centre’s skyline, however it is now unclear what will happen next with the project.
Cardiff council granted planning permission in 2017 for the new 248-bed hotel, as well as demolition of the York Hotel and most of the Custom House. Recently the construction of the hotel building had seen quick progress, with installation of cladding almost finished.
WRW Construction, based in Llanelli, collapsed in July after coming under “significant financial stress”. The company employed more than 100 people.
The former Custom House was built in the middle of the 1800s and was a grade-II listed building. The adjoining York Hotel building was built in the late 1800s, but was not listed.
The facade of the Custom House was kept, but now appears partly damaged by smoke.
Calls and emails to WRW were unanswered, while the company’s website was “temporarily unavailable”. Whitbread, which owns Premier Inn, was asked to comment.
Grant Thornton, who were called in as administrators, said: “We are unable to comment in relation to specific contracts as the team is currently assessing the position in each case.”
Text & Photos: Alex Seabrook