Vision launched for £38m community hub in North Wales

Hailed as “the most exciting thing to happen in our area for years” by Gwynedd Cllr Craig ab Iago, the project from housing group Grŵp Cynefin seeks to build apartments, medical facilities, flex offices, theatre and more in the centre of Penygroes.

Grŵp Cynefin is partnered with Gwynedd Council, Betsi Cadwaladr University Health Board and Theatr Bara Caws on the project, which has been tentatively named Canolfan Lleu.

While based in Penygroes, Canolfan would serve the residents of the Nantlle Valley, providing access to community health services such as physiotherapy, midwifery and the management of chronic conditions.

“Canolfan Lleu is a catalyst for making the valley a resilient place”, reads the project’s vision document.

The scheme calls for the construction of a 36-bed residential home, 17 independent living flats, and a new home for Theatr Bara Caws. There would also be a community pharmacy and building with core general medical facilities. Grŵp Cynefin would also relocate its offices to the development.

Grŵp Cynefin aims to make Canolfan Lleu net zero, with sustainable, locally sourced materials being used in the building. It would also be a walkable development with ample green spaces.

The group worked with PRP Architects to craft its Canolfan Lleu plans, publishing the Canolfan Lleu Vision Document on Tuesday.

“Publishing the Canolfan Lleu Vision Document is a significant milestone in this exciting and innovative project,” said Grŵp Cynefin chief executive Shan Lloyd Williams.

“It’s the result of years of close consultation with the communities of the Nantlle Valley and our partners to truly understand the needs and aspirations of those communities, to develop a really strong business case and to look at how it can all come together,” she said. “I’m immensely proud of the work that has already been done and am looking forward to the next stage, further developing the details and securing the funding.

“Canolfan Lleu promises to push the boundaries and break new ground in collaboration and inspire other communities in Wales to realise such projects.”

Cllr Iago, who is the Gwynedd Council cabinet member for housing, elaborated on the impact Canolfan Lleu could have on the community.

“If we get it right, it will go a long way towards creating an economically, socially, and environmentally sustainable Bro Lleu,” he said.

The Welsh Government is contributing funding through an ICF grant.

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Finally, a bit of thought about communities and green spaces. Can’t wait to see this.

By MS

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