Sunderland does not need more offices

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It was revealed at last Wednesday night’s full council meeting that the Software City is still under occupied.

The centre was opened in early 2013 and at the time Councillor Watson was quoted as saying “the building was part of the council’s longer term economic masterplan for further job creation and attracting investment”.

The building only has an occupancy of 61% with some of the businesses housed there being council subsidiaries such as Sunderland Live.

Software City is running at a loss of £241,000 per year, which in the current financial climate cannot be sustained.

The long term plan to attract more businesses to this building is clearly failing.

Only recently the council announced ‘grand plans’ for the Vaux site, with yet more office space to be built.

In addition to this, office space is sitting empty at Doxford International.

Quite simply, more office space is not needed in the city.

I urge council leaders to take another look at the plans for the Vaux site whilst also looking to improve occupancy in the Software City so that it ceases to be yet another financial burden on the tax payers of Sunderland.

Heather Fagan