Major phase of work begins under project to create bustling new riverside quarter for South Shields

Work to transform derelict docklands into a vibrant new riverside quarter for South Shields are entering a major phase.

Tuesday, 28th June 2022, 3:12 pm

A raft of engineering work is underway at Holborn, the derelict former industrial site to the west of Mill Dam, with the vision to create a bustling new community on the south bank of the River Tyne.

‘Remediation works’ got under way in February 2022, and work has now begun on a new quay edge wall, which will involve driving piles into the riverbed.

The new quay edge will be 1.8 metres higher than the existing wall, which will lift the former docks out of the flood zone.

Aerial view of main Holborn earthworks (May 2022)

The raised level will be created using materials gained by removing ‘ballast hills’ on the wider site.

It is part of wider civil engineering works being carried out to turn former brownfield land and disused docks into ‘a thriving quarter for living and working’.

Cllr Margaret Meling, Lead Member for Economic Growth, Skills and Climate Change, said: “The new quay edge wall is a key element of the civil engineering works at Holborn, which will prepare this nine-hectare site for its transformation into a fantastic new riverside location.

“This area has been largely derelict for many years and bears the hallmarks of its former heavy industrial use, which are currently constraints to development.

Work on the project started in February.

“The civil engineering works are needed to overcome these significant site issues and make it suitable to bring forward a mixed use development that will deliver family homes and office space, creating hundreds of new jobs.

“The raising of the former dry docks will overcome serious flooding issues and three of the docks will be restored to preserve the area’s industrial heritage.

Construction of the wall is expected to continue until spring next year. The wider remediation works will also include regrading of the site, which is currently split level, to create a gentle slope down to the River Tyne.

Other work includes decontamination of the ground, and three of the docks will be restored which council chiefs say will help preserve the area’s industrial heritage.

Work has now started on a new quay edge wall.

The scheme secured £1.85m from the government’s Brownfield Land Release Fund in 2021 to help deliver 250 of the new homes.

It also benefits from £9.4million Local Enterprise Partnership funding to support delivery of new office space in the Enterprise Zone.

Ben Williams, chief executive of John F Hunt Regeneration, which is building the quay edge wall, said: “Our works have reached an important phase in delivering this crucial regeneration project for the South Tyneside area.

“Piles will be driven into the riverbed to enable the site to be raised above the flood zone while enabling us to retain three of the original docks; these being an important part of the site’s character and industrial heritage.

The scheme is slated to turn the disused docks into ‘a thriving quarter for living and working’.

“We have registered the Holborn site under the Considerate Constructors Scheme, which is independently audited, to ensure we uphold the most robust standards on how our works impact the local community and environment.”

Keepmoat, working in partnership with Cussins, are the council’s residential development partner, delivering around 350 high-quality family houses and apartments and the associated infrasatructure, including a new riverside promenade.

Mott MacDonald Limited are acting as the principal designer for the civil engineering element of the Holborn scheme, and Driver Project Services are the contract administrators.

South Tyneside Council - Cllr Margaret Meling
Construction of the quay edge wall is expected to continue until spring next year.
Demolition of former retaining wall at Holborn Docks (May 2022)