Cardiff Bay

Cardiff Bay

Infobox UK place
official_name=Cardiff Bay
local_name= The Bay or Tiger Bay

area_total_km2 =
london_distance=150 Miles (241 Km)
welsh_name=Bae Caerdydd
constituency_welsh_assembly=Cardiff South & Penarth
website= Cardiff Harbour Authority

Cardiff Bay ( _cy. Bae Caerdydd) is the area created by the Cardiff Barrage in South Cardiff, Wales. The regeneration of Cardiff Bay is now widely regarded as one of the most successful regeneration projects in the UK. [Citation | title = Cardiff Bay Economic Development |year = April 2005 | pages = 8 | place = Cardiff | publisher = Cardiff Council | url = | id = ] The Bay is supplied by two rivers (Taff and Ely) to form a convert|500|acre|km2|sing=on freshwater lake round the former dockland area south of the city centre. The Bay was formerly tidal, with access to the sea limited to a couple of hours each side of high water but now provides 24 hour access through three locks [ Citation | last = Cardiff Harbour Authority | first = | title = Cardiff Bay Barrage |url=http: | accessdate = 2008-04-28 ] .


Cardiff Bay played a major part in Cardiff’s development by being the means of exporting coal from the South Wales Valleys to the rest of the world, helping to power the industrial age. The coal mining industry helped fund the building of Cardiff into the Capital city of Wales and helped the Third Marquis of Bute, who owned the docks, become the richest man in the world at the time.

As Cardiff exports grew, so did its population; dockworkers and sailors from across the world settled in neighbourhoods close to the docks, known as Tiger Bay, and communities from up to 45 different nationalities, including Norwegian, Somali, Yemeni, Spanish, Italian, Caribbean and Irish helped create the unique multicultural character of the area. After the Second World War most of the industry closed down and became derelict. But, in 1999, new life was injected into the area by the building of the Cardiff Bay Barrage, one of the most controversial building projects of the day but also one of the most successful [ Report on Cardiff Bay] .


The Cardiff Bay Development Corporation (CBDC) was created in 1987 to stimulate the redevelopment of 1,100 hectares (2,700 acres) of derelict land [Citation | title = Cardiff Bay Economic Development |year = April 2005 | pages = 8 | place = Cardiff | publisher = Cardiff Council | id = ] . The Development Corporation aimed to attract private capital by spending public money to improve the area. Despite opposition by environmentalists and wildlife organisations, the mudflats at the mouths of the River Taff and River Ely were inundated, with loss of habitat for wading birds. The Barrage has created several new habitats for freshwater species with the wetlands to the south of the Hamadryad Park.

When the Development Corporation was wound up in on March 31, 2000, it had achieved many of its objectives. The whole area was unrecognisable from ten years before. Much private land was now open to the public, particularly around the inner harbour and the north side of Roath basin. Work is progressing to complete a 13 kilometre walkway around the Bay and the Barrage has created a world-class environment. In addition the development has enabled land in the city centre to be redeveloped for higher-value uses. [Esys Consulting Ltd, Evaluation of Regeneration in Cardiff Bay. A report for the Welsh Assembly Government, December 2004]

The development of "something like 1,250 apartments a year" [ Citation | last = BBC | first = | title = 'Slum of the future' fear for Bay |url=
accessdate = 2008-06-08
] however might cause future problems, as currently (2008) up to one third are not occupied. Critics such as Lorraine Barrett (AM Labour, Cardiff South and Penarth) say, the flat complexes will not help to build up a community and too few attention has been paid to develop affordable housing. With the recent falls in property values, sales in the area have become problematic. Therefore landlords might be more willing to rent their places out to "people who may not be suited to that type of living." [ The Politics Show, BBC 1 Wales, Sun 08 June 2008] There is an overview of one of the latest developments in Cardiff Bay, Victoria Wharf which may be of interest to those reading about the continued development of this area: [ Cardiff Bay, Victoria Wharf]

Connecting the Bay area to the centre of Cardiff was a primary goal when plans to develop the docklands were first mooted. Original plans included a grand boulevard (similar to where Lloyd George Avenue is located now) with high density commercial and residential units straddling both sides. This would have created significant demand for quality public transport provisions facilitating connections to the new Bay area but public transport was often of poor quality and, despite much improved connections through the Cardiff Bus BayCar service, the most efficient way of reaching the Bay area is by car.

Notable buildings

t David's Hotel

The St David's Hotel and Spa is a 5-star hotel with commanding views of the Bay.

Cardiff Bay Visitor Centre

A unique building known locally as 'The Tube' managed by Cardiff Harbour Authority housing exhibitions and providing visitor information.

The Pierhead Building

The Pierhead was built in 1897 and designed by William Frame, who studied under William Burgess [ Citation | last = BBC | first = | title = Cardiff Bay - Pierhead |url=
accessdate = 2008-04-28
] It was formerly the headquarters of the Bute Dock Company.

The Senedd

The Senedd is the National Assembly for Wales debating chamber.

Wales Millennium Centre

The Wales Millennium Centre is home to the Welsh National Opera.

Norwegian Church

The Norwegian Church Arts Centre, is a rescued historic wooden church that was rebuilt in 1992 and is now managed by Cardiff Harbour Authority as a venue for small concerts and art exhibitions [ [ Norwegian Church Cardiff - Home, Welcome, Croeso, Velkommen ] ] .


Techniquest is an educational science centre.

Roald Dahl Plass

Roald Dahl Plass is a large open amphitheatre style plaza frequently used as a venue for carnivals and festivals all year round.

Water-based attractions

* The Cardiff Bay Wetland Reserve which has rare birds and a boardwalk leading to a viewing platform
* The Water Bus, which offers a public transport service and tourist cruises.
* Cardiff Bay Barrage, accessible via the Water Bus and by road, is free to explore and also has guided tours.
* the Helwick Lightship, a restored old Lightvessel with a cafe.
* Queen Alexandra Dock
* several smaller docks with landscaped seating areas and bridges, and views across the Bay.
* numerous small private yachts and fishing boats moored within the Bay.
* A wide range of watersports tuition & activities at [http://www.adventurecardiff/ Adventure Cardiff] .
* [ Cardiff Yacht Club] - Dinghy racing and cruising, yacht racing and cruising, sea fishing, rowing
* [ Cardiff Bay Yacht Club] - The premier watersports club in South Wales
* [ Cardiff City Rowing Club]

Commercial and residential

* Style-conscious shops, bars and restaurants at Mermaid Quay.
* The Point, a popular club and live music venue.
* The Coal Exchange (aka The Exchange Centre), a venue for staged events.
* Harry Ramsden's fish and chip bar - a large, prominent building.
* Bosphorus a Turkish restaurant offering a panoramic bay view
* Cardiff Bay Ice Rink
* Cardiff International Sports Village (under construction)
* The Red Dragon Centre (formerly "Atlantic Wharf Leisure Village"), a large shopping, leisure and entertainment complex which also hosts a permanent Doctor Who exhibition, "Doctor Who Up Close".
* Atlantic Wharf, the area surrounding the refurbished Bute East Dock, with modern residential and commercial developments, and Cardiff County Hall.
* [ Mischief's Cafe Bar] , a modern cafe & bar near the Coal Exchange with live music on the weekends

Appearances in the media

Cardiff Bay was used as the high-tech urban setting for the Ninth Doctor "Doctor Who" episode Boom Town and for the Torchwood spinoff, whose makers deliberately avoided stereotypical portrayals of Wales to portray Cardiff as a modern urban centre. In the fictional land of torchwood there is a Giant Basement style base, secretly under-neath the bay named the "Hub" from here the torchwood team work. There is also apprantlly a lift from the hub into the Plaza with a perception filter making anyone who stands on the spot "Not noticed". [cite news
first = Karen
last = Price
title = Action, aliens - and it's filmed in Wales
url =–aliens—and-it-s-filmed-in-wales&method=full&objectid=17956580&siteid=50082-name_page.html
work = Western Mail
date = 2006-10-19
accessdate = 2006-11-04
] . Roald Dahl Plass features prominently.

Also the Tenth Doctor "Doctor Who" Christmas Special (2006), "The Runaway Bride" [cite news
first = BBC
last = Wales South East
title = Doctor Who: The Runaway Bride
url = | work = BBC Wales
date = 2006-12-25
accessdate = 2007-10-24
] made use of office buildings in the Cardiff Bay.


Cardiff Bay railway station is northeast of Mermaid Quay and is served by shuttle services to Cardiff Queen Street railway station.

Cardiff Bus operates the following services to the Bay:
*1 - "Bay Circle clockwise": Grangetown-Leckwith-Canton-Fairwater-Llandaff-Gabalfa-Heath-Penylan-Roath-Tremorfa-Central Station
*2 - "Bay Circle anticlockwise": as above but reversed
*6 - "Baycar": Queen Street station via Central Station
*8 - University Hospital of Wales via Grangetown, Central Station, Roath, Cathays and Heath
*11 - Pengam Green via Central Station and Tremorfa
*35 - Gabalfa via Central Station, Cathays and Heath

The Bay lies of the A4232 before the Butetown tunnels and is linked to the city centre by Lloyd George Avenue or Bute Street.

ee also

* Tiger Bay
* Butetown
* List of places in Cardiff
* Penarth Marina
* Cardiff



External links

* [ Cardiff Harbour Authority]
* [ A map of Cardiff Bay]
* [ Cardiff Yacht Club]
* [http://www.CardiffYesterday/ Cardiff Yesterday Share your Photos Stories and Memories of Cardiff]
* [ Port of Cardiff]
* [ : photos of Cardiff Bay]

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Cardiff Bay Wetlands Reserve — is located in Cardiff Bay in the city of Cardiff. It covers an area of approximately 8 hectares (19.8 acres). The area was officially opened as a wildlife reserve on 25 July 2002 in what was previously an area of Site of Special Scientific… …   Wikipedia

  • Cardiff Bay Opera House — was an ill fated project in the 1990s in Cardiff, Wales, conceived as a crucial part of the Cardiff Bay redevelopment project, one aim being the creation of a new home for the Welsh National Opera company, which was then based in the New Theatre… …   Wikipedia

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  • Cardiff Bay Barrage — The Cardiff Bay Barrage lies across the mouth of Cardiff Bay, Wales between Queen Alexandra Dock and Penarth Head. It was one of the largest civil engineering projects in Europe during construction in the 1990s.HistoryThe concept of a barrage was …   Wikipedia

  • Cardiff Bay Development Corporation — Infobox Organization name = Cardiff Bay Development Corporation image border = size = 150px caption = msize = mcaption = motto = formation = 1987 extinction = 2000 type = headquarters = Cardiff location = membership = language = English and Welsh …   Wikipedia

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  • Cardiff Bay Opera House —    Planned as the centrepiece of the Cardiff Bay redevelopment, the Cardiff Opera House was the subject of an international design competition in 1994. Against competition from Norman Foster (see Foster Associates) of Britain and Rafael Moneo of… …   Encyclopedia of contemporary British culture

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  • Cardiff International Sports Village — (Welsh: Pentref Chwaraeon Rhyngwladol Caerdydd ), which is also known as the Cardiff Sports Village or the ISV, is located in Cardiff Bay in the city of Cardiff, Wales. It is one of the largest regeneration projects currently in the UK. It is a… …   Wikipedia

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