Work underway on new £9.1million vehicle workshop and depot in Washington

Work is underway on the new £9.1million vehicle workshop and depot which is part of efforts to make Sunderland cleaner and greener.

Thursday, 14th October 2021, 3:56 pm

Esh Construction was appointed as the contractor to build the new Parsons Vehicle Workshop and Depot in Washington and create a fuel station, electric charging hub, and large barn which can store up to 7,500 tonnes of gritting salt.

Sunderland City Council said the development will provide a new strategic asset and support its aim of making the city carbon neutral by 2040.

It will house frontline services for fleet management, highways operations, refuse collection, horticultural services, and seasonal road gritting.

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Work is underway on the new vehicle workshop and depot.

Esh divisional director Gary Dobson said: “Esh Construction is proud to be delivering a scheme which will lead the way in improving sustainability and carbon reduction for the Council’s vehicle fleet.

“As a local contractor we will deliver social and economic value throughout this scheme, with a key focus on procuring a local supply chain, employing a local workforce, and providing on-site training opportunities.”

Deputy leader of Sunderland City Council and Cabinet Member for the Environment, Councillor Claire Rowntree, said: “The redevelopment of Parsons Depot will help to ensure that the council can continue to deliver quality frontline services to residents, and it expands our capacity for further frontline service developments as we invest in new and lower carbon vehicles.

“This investment is an important part of our plans as we continue to work towards our goal of becoming a carbon neutral city.”

Councillor Claire Rowntree with the team from Esh.

The depot will include solar photo voltaic and battery storage system, which is being match funded by the European Regional Development Fund.

"The Battery Energy Storage System (BESS) will capture the energy produced by the solar PV - limiting the electricity required from the grid – and provide a charging facility for the councils growing electric vehicle fleet.

Major groundworks – vibro compaction, deep drainage installation and foundation construction – have kickstarted the project, paving the way for the new building.

It is anticipated that staff will move into the new building in spring 2022 and the final phase will see the old depot demolished to make way for additional car parking.

Work is underway on the new vehicle workshop and depot.

To find out more about Esh Construction, visit

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