Plans to install two huge digital advertising signs in South Shields town centre have been met with mixed views from Gazette readers.
South Tyneside Council wants to place 15ft-high illuminated advertising signs on both sides of the Metro Bridge in King Street.
The council is seeking permission for the signs from its own planning committee.
They will be supported by pillars - not attached to the bridge.
The move follows a controversial 10ft by 20ft display being installed on the A194 Leam Lane, approaching Whitemare Pool roundabout in Jarrow last year. This was done in partnership with the local authority’s project partner Kong Outdoor
Coun Lee Hughes, of the Putting People First party, slated the original display over fears it could be a distraction for drivers using the 70mph road. He is now demanding to know how many more signs will be installed across the borough and how much the council is making from them.
However, council bosses refuse to say how much revenue is being generated, saying that information is “commercially sensitive”.
They also refuse to say how much the displays cost, or who is footing the bill.
Gazette readers are split over the plan.
David Paulsen said: “People moan when they don’t do anything to King Street. Then they try to do something and what happens? People moan about it”
Chelsie Jade Boyack said: “It will be canny I think, especially if they use it to promote local events and businesses.
“King Street isn’t great. We all know that, so anything that helps improve it and bring business in can’t be a bad idea?”
Benjamin Bicker said: “People realise that the council will receive advertising revenue and can put the profits back into the town.”
Didacts said: “Can’t see a problem with the signs being hung on the Metro bridge. That’s where I would expect advertising to be situated and if it generates much needed revenue then that’s great. The illuminated sign on the A194 needs to be removed though it’s a dangerous distraction.”
Banished said: “The value of an advertising sign is surely connected to how many people see it. Given the wasteland which is King Street, how can this be a successful enterprise?
Rmrcdo said: “If these signs are introduced, any revenue should be spent on cleaning up the borough. Weeds, broken or uneven pavement and litter trapped in hedgerows. Yes there are other priorities.”
However, Bobby Burn had high hopes for the potential signs.
He wrote: “Might show midnight movies. Get your deck chairs out.”