Residents are on the fence over plans to demolish a vacant former council office block and build 18 affordable houses in South Shields.
The proposal comes as part of a regeneration programme in South Tyneside which would see five two-bedroom and 13 three-bedroom properties, and car parking spaces, created on the site of Gordon House, in Gordon Street, South Shields.
Gosforth-based Isos Housing Limited has secured £579,000 from the government’s Homes and Communities Agency to part-fund the scheme.
Under its terms, homeowners rent their property at 80% of its market value, allowing them to save for a deposit and buy after five years.
The project is set to gain consent at a meeting of South Tyneside Council’s planning committee next week.
That comes despite a small number of objections from nearby residents, worried about car parking, access to rear yards and other traffic issues.
Residents took to the Gazettes Facebook page to share their views.
Eileen Jackson said: “Not more houses! There are still plenty vacant ones on other new developments.”
Kenneth Wood commented: “This council is obsessed in building more and more houses.
“It’s about time they started to build factory units to get some work into the town.”
But Lynn Taylor was in favour of the project. She said: “We need more council houses, so it’s better then the site just going to waste.”
Colin Tosh agreed: “It’s good that pre-existing building is being used rather than cutting into greenbelt.”
Shaun Mclaughlin added: “We need housing think it’s a good idea.
“Local business will benefit from more people in the area.”
But Amanda Meikle expressed concern over the size of the site, saying: “I can’t understand how they are going to fit 18 houses with parking on that tiny piece of land.”