Dock Feeder Canal on Churchill Way opens to the public on Friday, 24 November


The Dock Feeder on Churchill Way - which runs from the top of Churchill Way to North Edward Street - will open to the public on Friday, 24 November, with a brass band and street entertainers in place to mark the beginning of a vision for a new vibrant city centre district.

The opening of the Dock Feeder is the first phase of a wider regeneration project, with plans to extend the canal along Churchill Way to connect to the Dock Feeder south of Tyndall Street. This new development could open the potential to deliver a new urban district including the regeneration of Bridge Street, David Street, Charles Street, Tredegar Street, Guildford Crescent, and Barrack Lane.

The re-emergence of the Dock Feeder will also deliver a new water habitat in the city centre, creating a newpublic space with rain gardens to manage surface water, outdoor seating, an amphitheatre-style performance area and two foot bridges to cross the water.

In the 1830's, the dock feeder ran from the River Taff in Blackweir down to Cardiff Docks to maintain the water levels in Cardiff's Bute Dock. This allowed the dock to operate 24 hours a day, even at low tide, servicing a 25-mile-long Glamorganshire Canal from Merthyr Tydfill to Cardiff to bring steel and iron down to the city.

The Glamorganshire Canal was covered up between 1948 and 1950 and the Dock Feeder on Churchill Way was covered over with concrete beams and the carriageway built over the top of it. Now that 69 of the 7.5 tonne concrete beams have been removed, the Dock Feeder can be seen again in all its glory for the public to enjoy.

Cllr Dan De'Ath, Cabinet Member for Strategic Planning and Transport said: "The opening of the Dock Feeder on Churchill Way has two main purposes, firstly as a very effective way of managing surface water and secondly as the first stage of a regeneration scheme, to work with private investors to deliver a successful high-density mixed-use development, attracting homes, hotels, hospitality, high quality offices, leisure, and retail units.

"We have already seen businesses in Churchill Way looking to adapt, with change in use applications being submitted to the council as the Planning Authority, and the recent announcement of a new bar opening later this year. The Dock Feeder should act as a catalyst for private sector investment creating jobs and opportunities in the east of the city centre.

"This scheme is also linked with a new transport scheme on Station Terrace to improve traffic flow around the city centre with a new cycleway, wider pavements and an improved junction between Adam Street and Churchill Way.

"As an engineering feature, a series of rain gardens have been built, with specific soil and planting to treat the surface water to remove pollutants before the water flows into the canal. This will ensure that 3,700 m2of water will be diverted away from the sewage system each year, reducing the cost and energy of treating this water through the sewage pumping station at Cardiff Bay."