Work to start on new South Shields job centre - hailed as 'key piece of masterplan jigsaw' for town centre

Work is due to start ‘imminently’ on the new job centre building in South Shields town centre.

A computer-generated image of how the new JobCentre Plus building will look
A computer-generated image of how the new JobCentre Plus building will look

The scheme will see the JobCentre Plus branch on Barrington Street demolished and rehoused in a new 12,000 sq ft building off Mile End Road housing 65 employees.

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It would also bring over a range of services to help people of working age find work and claim benefits, as well as specialist support for those with disabilities, and free up land for development under South Tyneside Council’s 365 vision for the town centre.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP), national urban regenerator, Muse Developments, along with partners South Tyneside Council have now seen contracts exchange, with work due to start on the site.

The project is expected to take 12 months to complete and be finished by the end of 2021.

David Wells, regional director at Muse Developments, said: “Bringing forward the relocated JobCentre in the town centre is a key piece of the masterplan jigsaw, which will enable us to deliver the exciting retail and leisure phase that will create an exciting family-friendly experience in the heart of the town.

“Working collaboratively and progressively with our partners at South Tyneside Council, we’re able to bring forward transformational regeneration that will drive economic growth and social prosperity to benefit the community at a time when it’s needed most.”

Cllr John Anglin, South Tyneside Council’s lead member for regeneration and economy, said: “This is another milestone towards realising our vision for the town centre and it’s thanks to our close working relationships with both the DWP and Muse, that despite all the challenges this year has thrown at us, momentum continues on our ambitious 365 plans.

“This is going to be a fantastic, purpose-built building for the town’s new Job Centre.

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“Its relocation has freed up land for us to be able to progress our plans for phase three, which will provide an enhanced retail and leisure offer to help create a vibrant town centre experience, day and night.”

National contractor, GMI Construction, has been appointed to build the BREEAM ‘very good’ building on Mile End Road that will become home to 65 DWP employees, bringing over a range of services to help people of working age find work, claim benefits, as well as specialist support for those with disabilities.

The relocation of DWP from Barrington Street to Mile End Road is one of the key pieces in the repurposing of South Shields town centre, as it will free up land and bring forward the third phase of the game-changing regeneration of the area – an exciting retail and leisure offer with improved connectivity, pedestrian access and public open space to benefit both the town and the community.

The ambitious £100m South Shields 365 regeneration masterplan is being delivered through a close collaboration between Muse and South Tyneside Council. The wider scheme has already delivered two statement buildings in ‘The Word’ – the multi-award-winning National Centre for the Written Word – and the £21million state-of-the-art South Shields interchange, which has brought together the town’s Metro and bus station, with improved accessibility for all.

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