Council aims to cut cost of Hebburn hub

VISION OF THE FUTURE ... how the Hebburn hub will look.
VISION OF THE FUTURE ... how the Hebburn hub will look.
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South Tyneside Council is looking to reduce the cost of a new £12.8m community hub in Hebburn, councillors will learn this week.

Work is to start next month on a six-lane town centre swimming pool, library and learning centre.

But through detailed scrutiny of the costs involved, officials hope to reduce the financial outlay “a little”, members of the borough’s full council will be told on Thursday.

Additionally, contractor Willmott Dixon Construction has been legally committed to sourcing 30 per cent of the project to businesses based within 20 miles of the construction site.

And there is also a commitment to provide 24 apprenticeships and/or jobs for unemployed people in the borough during the course of the project, which is due for completion in December next year.

A report to the committee from David Cramond, the council’s director of economic regeneration, says: “The new hub will generate significant footfall in the town centre, and this, in turn, will help stimulate private sector investment in the retail area.

“Moreover, this new investment will also deliver public-realm improvements and will help restore civic pride and reinforce the identity of the town.

“Willmott Dixon Construction has submitted their tender to the council.

“This is for a guaranteed maximum price of £12.8m.

“The tender is undergoing detailed scrutiny by our cost consultants, and the expectation is that we will be able to reduce this figure a little.

“The contractor is contractually committed to sourcing 30 per cent of the project spend within 20 miles of this project, thus offering significant opportunities to local companies.

“They are also committed to providing 24 apprenticeships/jobs for unemployed residents.”

The full council is to meet in South Shields Town Hall from 6pm on Thursday.