ALMOST 300 new homes could be built in South Tyneside, thanks to unused public-sector land being made available for development.
Communities Secretary Eric Pickles claims that enough land has been released to accommodate more than 100,000 new homes across the country, 270 of them in the borough.
Rather than leaving surplus public-sector land idle, we are putting it to good use by releasing it to build new homes across the country.Eric Pickles, Communities Secretary
The plots of land being made available to builders are brownfield sites currently derelict and run down.
Mr Pickles said: “House-building is at the heart of the Government’s long-term economic plan.
“That’s why, rather than leaving surplus public-sector land idle, we are putting it to good use by releasing it to build new homes across the country.”
Now, the Government is challenging councils, including South Tyneside’s, and developers to help turn the land available into housing as soon as possible.
It is also urging local authorities to follow its example by selling off their redundant sites and buildings.
“I now want to see councils following Whitehall’s example and explore what they can do to release land and deliver new homes and savings for local taxpayers,” said Mr Pickles.
Coun Allan West, South Tyneside Council’s lead member for housing and transport, said the authority welcomed the allocation of more land for building and is awaiting further details on what sites are being made available.
He said: “This is welcome news, but it is vital that any new and affordable housing meets the needs of the local community and, importantly, that it has the infrastructure in place.
“South Tyneside Council is fully committed to supporting the delivery of new homes to meet the needs of our growing population.
“We look forward to hearing further details of which land has been allocated by the Government, and we will continue to work with partners and developers to come up with innovative solutions to build much-needed new homes.”