THE go-ahead is set to be given for the extension of a South Tyneside factory – and the creation of 180 much-needed jobs.
Members of the council’s planning committee will be asked to grant permission for a single-storey light industrial building at Siemens in North Farm Road, Hebburn.
The unit is to be used for the assembly of electrical harnesses for rail carriages.
The work is part of the borough plants’s share in a massive £1.6bn contract to make 1,400 carriages as part of an extension of the Thameslink line from Brighton to Bedford.
It comes as a vital time for the plant.
Workers have been worried that some of their work could be transferred to Goa in India.
The potential job losses have been blamed on increased international competition in the energy protection market.
But German-owned Siemens has stressed all along that work on the massive Thameslink contract would not be affected.
And members of the council’s planning committee will be recommended to agree the development when they meet at South Shields Town Hall on Monday, September 30, from 10am.
Gavin Peralta, progamme manager at Siemens Services, said: “We are making good progress with our plans to prepare the Hebburn site to undertake the manufacture of hi tech rail components, which includes work on the Thameslink contract. The planning application is the next stage in this process.”
A report to the committee says: “The proposal would bring a new business operation onto the site for the applicant and it would create 180 new jobs. It is considered acceptable in terms of layout and design.”
The applications includes 90 car parking spaces and storage for 40 cycles. The grey steel clad building will be 2,700 square metres and 9ft high.