BRINGIN Tesco to Sunderland may have been a lengthy process, but Sunderland City Council leader Coun Paul Watson is confident the wait has been worthwhile.
Coun Watson was on site at the Sunderland Retail Park in Roker yesterday to formally launch the project.
The start of work on the Sunderland Retail Park in Newcastle Road marks the end of a process which started when Tesco snapped up the former Vaux brewery site on the other side of Wearmouth Bridge more than ten years ago.
“I think the readers of the Sunderland Echo over the last decade or so will be fully conversant with the situation,” said Coun Watson.
“But we absolutely now do have the best of both worlds – we have the remediation of the Vaux site and we have buildings being demolished to allow Tesco to build a superstore here, which is one of the biggest in the country.”
Tesco corporate affairs manager Doug Wilson was also upbeat. “It is a huge day and it is an exciting day for Tesco, for Sunderland and for the work that we have done together,” he said.
Contractor Barr Construction is building the 8,378 square metres Tesco Extra, set to open in spring next year. The site will include a combination of new shop units with other buildings being renewed and retained for existing businesses.
The development will boast 900 car parking spaces, many in an underground car park with electric vehicle charging points.