SUNDERLAND’S new £80million road bridge over the Wear is a step closer today, after council bosses unveiled details of the land they will need to acquire for the scheme.
A public notice in the Echo outlined all the plots of land the city council has earmarked for the project and which could be subject to compulsory purchase orders.
A spokesman said: “The publication of these notices is another step on this route to beginning construction.
“The council is in regular contact with all businesses within the site boundary and remains keen to work with all those affected in an ethical and equitable way.”
The notices outline the construction of improvements to existing roadways around the bridge, between Pallion and Castletown, as well as access to premises on both sides.
The new scheme will replace the ambitious £118million “iconic” bridge, designed by North East-born architect Stephen Spence, which was originally planned.
The Echo revealed last summer that council chiefs had been forced to scrap the ambitious plan after no builder could be persuaded to take it on for the budget on offer.
A Prior Information Notice (PIN) for the replacement scheme was published in March, and the council held a Market Sounding Event for more than 40 companies last month after receiving confirmation from central Government that £82.5m of funding for the project has been guaranteed as part of the Sunderland City Deal in Partnership with South Tyneside.
Planning permission already exists for the original scheme and notices have been published this week announcing the council is revising the plans. The aim is to award a contract for the work in summer next year.
City council leader Coun Paul Watson said: “The bridge will bring the growth and infrastructure benefits of the initial design, by reducing congestion, improving connectivity and unlocking brownfield land with its potential to increase growth, jobs and investment.”