A NEW community and arts space has opened on the site of a former post office in downtown Newport.
The Place in Bridge Street is a multifunctional arts and community space that has been transformed from a former post office into a creative hub by the Tin Shed Theater company and other organisations.
Paul Clark, Development Manager at Newport City Homes – owner of the building – said: “We are reinventing and supporting Newport town centre.
The place opened in May and has provided a safe space for Newport creatives
“This strategic acquisition of the former post office will allow us in the years to come to think differently about the development of this sector of the city.
“Including the incredible energy of Tin Shed in what is now The Place will help redefine the area with good positive energy.
“Street art has already created a real buzz and is making the neighborhood much more inviting to the way visitors and residents see the city.”
The center also offers performance and workshop spaces, a creativity space built and run by young people, a sensory and well-being room and artist residencies.
Since opening in May, The Place has supported local youth, audiences and artists by providing a safe space to mingle with other creative people. Now the company has received a grant from Newport City Homes to further redevelop the site.
The place, on the former site of the post office and under the Ritzys nightclub
In partnership with Umbra Building services, they plan to build 18 one and two bedroom apartments in Upper Dock Street, with commercial units on the ground floor.
George Harris, co-founder of Tin Shed Theater Co, said: “We are extremely grateful for the funding and support offered by Newport City Homes for this ambitious redevelopment project of The Place.
“The money allowed us to work with local artists and artisans to give the building’s facade a bright and dynamic facelift.
“We worked alongside Oleana Creates, a Newport cabinetmaker who handcrafted the planters and much of the interior furniture from recycled wood, and Molly Hawkins, a mural artist who donated to the building the “pop” he needed.
“Our planters are now home to perennials and wildflowers that will attract pollinators and other beneficial insects to support the return of nature to urban environments, reduce Co2 emissions and remind people that everyone should have access to nature.
“This project now articulates with our wellness area and aims to build an army of urban gardeners.
“We feel inspired by what The Place has to offer Newport and its residents, by providing safe and inclusive spaces for people, we can build a more socially cohesive city.
“We would like to thank Newport City Homes and Umbra for supporting this vision.”
The company wanted to use the community benefits program to make the donation to support a local project.
Graham Kuhlmann, senior project manager for Umbra Building Services, said: “Whenever we work on a site, we always try to do extra work in the local community.
“I enjoyed visiting The Place to meet the team and see how much of a difference our donation made.”