WORK is under way on a new £30million development to create 95 homes and 200 jobs on a derelict site.
Developers and residents held a sod-cutting ceremony on the new Teal Farm Village project yesterday, on the former Cape Insulation site, off Pattinson Road, Washington.
The project will create much-needed executive housing and a new village centre for the area, with a shopping parade and pub/restaurant.
“This is a great day,” said Gavin Cordwell-Smith, chief executive of developers the Hellens Group.
“We’ve been working on this for two years now, so it’s really nice to see it coming to fruition.
“It’s one of the biggest private sector developments in Sunderland, if not in the region, in 2011/12.
“It’s a multimillion-pound investment.”
He added: “I’m very grateful to the residents, Sunderland City Council and the project team for supporting this.”
The project will create about 200 construction jobs.
The retail parade will create 32 permanent jobs and the pub/restaurant is expected to employ 41 people.
The sod-cutting was performed by Fiona Miller, a Teal Farm resident and Labour councillor for Washington East.
“This has been a long time in the coming,” she said.
“We’re getting a village centre and it’s very exciting.
“I’m also hopeful this will improve the transport system here, because we’re in great need of a better bus service.”
Her husband Graeme Miller, a councillor for Washington South, added: “We’re getting a village centre, which is great, because there isn’t anything here for residents.
“Now we’ve got the population density to support it, and this will be a great thing for the community.”
The development will include a multi-use games area, a play park and footpaths connecting to nearby woodland walks.
The site, which has sat empty for more than 20 years, overlooks Penshaw Monument and hopes are high that there will be great demand for the new properties.
New road safety measures will be put in place in the area as a condition of the development’s planning permission.
This includes dropping the speed limit to 40mph, altering the roundabout system at the site’s access points and extending cycleways, footways and public transport provision.