NEIGHBOURS living beside a proposed waste station have hit out at the plans to deal with the city’s rubbish.
Recycling and waste management company Sita UK has revealed its proposals for the site on land off Commercial Road in Hendon.
But residents are unhappy after hearing the area, at Jack Crawford House, would deal with up to 80,000 tonnes of household and business waste and 2,000 tonnes of recyclable materials collected by Sunderland City Council every year.
Household rubbish would be delivered to the site for sorting and loading onto bigger lorries, before being taken to a new waste facility in Teesside, where it would be burnt.
But angry resident Eddy Moore has said although the waste station is needed, it would be in the wrong place.
Speaking on behalf of the Long Streets Action Group, after a drop-in consultation event by SITA UK at Hendon’s Raich Carter Centre, he said: “We live in the residential area very close to the entrance to Jack Crawford House, therefore concerns are expressed of the actual number of vehicle movements to service this station.
“These vehicles, let’s call them bin wagons, are starting very early morning, with between 80 to 100 wagons extra to normal traffic movements at this section of Southern Radial route and quite possible down our Corporation Road to the station entrance.
“There are concerns over the possibility of rubbish, smells, dust and vermin actually escaping from the station.
“On the adjacent site to the south there is now granted outline planning permission for a 300-property housing development with some industrial units, as we were informed to replace the paper mill operations on this site.
“To the East of this site is the part-regenerated Hendon Beach area with plans for a North, South cycle and walk paths as a Tees/Wear route.”
Mr Moore, of Canon Cockin Street, believes the waste station should be built within the city docks at Hendon.
He added: “The Port is an industrial area with petrol, chemical, scrap, timber, some ship repair facilities and even sewage works, all requiring movements of heavy good vehicles.
“Even with these industries there would be ample space for building an even larger station, or maybe in the future a need for expansion to this station.
“With some forethought and planning, the material destined for Teesside could even by delivered by ship.
“This would generate shipping movement and dock charges to increase the business performance of the Port of Sunderland, or even utilise the existing rail line again, which would also minimise environmental traffic.”
Sita UK planning manager, Corrina Scott-Roy said: “We are pleased that the Long Street Action Group was able to visit our public drop-in session.
“We have listened to their comments and we will do all we can to alleviate their concerns.
“We are encouraged by their support for recycling and the principle of recovering energy from waste which is what this proposed transfer station will help to achieve.
“The proposed waste transfer station would be an essential part of Sunderland’s waste management infrastructure.
“We believe that this site in Hendon would be ideal for this development, and is identified in the Council’s planning policy as suitable for business and industrial development with specific reference to waste and recycling activities.
“On balance there will be a relatively minor increase in traffic of only 1.2 percent.
“A transport assessment using data from the Department for Transport’s permanent traffic count sites on Commercial Road and elsewhere, indicate that the road infrastructure in this area is adequate for this type of development.
“The majority of the activity involving waste at the site will take place inside an enclosed building with an odour control system.
“The Environment Agency would regulate and monitor the site ensuring that the environment and public health are protected.
“The waste industry is heavily regulated and the facility will be licensed to operate only if we can demonstrate that it has systems to control and prevent odours, dust and vermin.
“Sita UK operate a number of similar facilities across the UK and takes its responsibility for being a good neighbour very seriously.
“We are currently in discussions with the Long Street Action Group about the possibility of a trip to an operational site so they can see for themselves how the site operates to prevent any issues for our nearby residential neighbours.”