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Business & Economy

Parsons redevelopment paves way for carbon-neutral Sunderland

A £9.1 million regeneration project in Washington will help Sunderland achieve carbon neutral status by 2040.

Parsons Vehicle Workshop and Depot is to be demolished and replaced with a new council depot building which will house workshop spaces and accommodation.

A security gatehouse will service the site entrance, which leads to fleet, staff and visitor parking facilities, a fuel station, and a large barn capable of storing up to 7500 tonnes of gritting salt.

Councillor Graeme Miller, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “Our City Plan is about delivering a more dynamic, healthy and vibrant Sunderland, and it includes a commitment to making the city carbon neutral by 2040.

“As the council invests in new and lower carbon technology, including its vehicle fleet, we are looking to the new facilities and structures that are needed to support frontline services and their important work.

“The redevelopment of Parsons is helping to ensure we continue to deliver and have the capacity for further frontline service investments. We look forward to this partnership and redevelopment work at Parsons with Esh.”

The project will provide a new asset for the council and will house frontline services for fleet management, highways operations, refuse collection, horticultural services and seasonal road gritting.

Construction is set to begin in early summer 2021 and will be delivered by Esh Construction in partnership with Howarth Litchfield, Portland Consulting Engineers and Desco.

Chris Hale, estimating director at Esh Construction, said: “We are delighted to be delivering this development on behalf of Sunderland City Council who is one of our valued and long-standing clients within the region.

“This is a key win for Esh and further strengthens our commercial build portfolio with over £72 million of projects underway or due to commence.”

To assist in achieving future green energy requirements, the depot will include a solar PV and battery storage system, which is being match funded by the European Regional Development Fund.