One last look be­fore it’s gone

South Wales Echo - - News - RUTH MOSALSKI So­cial Af­fairs Cor­re­spon­dent [email protected]­

IN THE decades since it opened, St David’s House has been home to thou­sands of of­fice work­ers.

Now, the once bustling floors are empty ahead of it be­ing de­mol­ished.

The so-called “soft” de­mo­li­tion is to be­gin within days with all re­main­ing fur­ni­ture and equip­ment be­ing re­moved. The plas­ter­boards, bro­ken car­pets and stained ceil­ing tiles all to be torn out.

On pa­per, the ac­tual de­mo­li­tion is to be­gin in Fe­bru­ary. All but one of the shops on the ground floor have now gone. Tesco is the fi­nal store to leave.

It will close early to­day, re­open­ing at its new lo­ca­tion in the BBC head­quar­ters build­ing on Mon­day. In­side the build­ing, there are rem­nants of its for­mer ten­ants.

Signs on the stair­well di­rect you to what once were the of­fices of Cardiff Bus, Cardiff coun­cil, Robert McAlpine, Royal Bri­tish Le­gion and Ar­riva Trains Wales. There are nurses’ rooms through­out the build­ing, and a height chart still at­tached to the wall in one.

The old Ar­riva counter is still in place on the fourth floor. Some uni­forms aban­doned, the hol­i­day en­ti­tle­ment sheets still on show.

Ar­riva had to have its own plant room to pro­vide heat­ing and power to its staff 24 hours a day.

The build­ing was also where drivers used to sit their driv­ing the­ory tests.

The build­ing is be­ing de­mol­ished to make way for an­other new build­ing as part of Cen­tral Square.

The new build­ing will be known as 5 Cen­tral Square.

The de­crepit state of the of­fices in­side the build­ing are in stark con­trast to the shiny of­fice blocks tak­ing shape nearby.

The build­ing is across the road on Wood Street from the new BBC Wales head­quar­ters and the Hugh James and Cardiff Univer­sity Jour­nal­ism School build­ing. On the other side is the new HMRC build­ing.

Soon Cardiff’s new bus sta­tion will fill the other un­oc­cu­pied cor­ner of the site on what was once the even-more­run­down Mar­land House and the neigh­bour­ing NCP car park.

The for­mer Ar­riva Trains Wales of­fices on level five

The boiler room

A peek through a hole in an of­fice wall

An old pic­ture of St David’s House left in one of the of­fices

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