NEW images have been released offering fresh insight into how a vision of the future lined up for South Shields town centre will look.
The £100m 365 masterplan is beginning to take shape.
The redevelopment initiative will see great swathes of the town transformed over the next decade and beyond.
The first element of the plan is the creation of a new central library and digital hub at the old Wouldhave House site in Market Place.
And new artists’ impressions have been unveiled revealing how the interior of the building will look and how Market Place will be reshaped.
South Tyneside Council leader Coun Iain Malcolm says the public response to the masterplan has been “very positive”. Now the council is pushing ahead with the scheme alongside its partner, Muse Developments.
The new images released reveal a partially-covered market and a bright, modern-looking digital hub.
The company has now submitted a planning application for a central library and digital media centre in Ferry Street, on the riverside, and improvements to the adjacent Market Place.
That development will form phase one of the regeneration.
It is anticipated that the application will be considered by the council’s planning committee in the autumn and, if approved, work on site could start early next year.
The council is also making progress acquiring the land and properties it needs for the regeneration plans, with former shoe shop Riddicks, in Fowler Street, the latest property to be purchased.
Coun Malcolm said: “This heralds the beginning of the transformation of South Shields town centre.
“We’re making excellent progress, and the project is gathering pace.
“The feedback we received during the public consultation period was very positive and reinforced the fact that we have the support of residents and businesses.
“They recognise that change is necessary to create a sustainable future for the town centre.
“South Shields has tremendous potential, and this masterplan is about making sure that potential is realised and acts as a catalyst for growth, creating jobs and opportunities for local people.”
Planners believe the ambitious project will position South Shields town centre as a vibrant year-round retail and leisure destination.