South Shields town centre car park to close this month to make way for new Job Centre building
A well-worn South Tyneside car park is set to be given over to new employment – as a job centre.
The 70-space Mile End Road gravelled site in South Shields town centre, will be handed its P45 next Friday, September 18, and permanently closed.
Its change of use foreshadows the creation of a modern Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) building being assembled in its place.
The existing DWP site in Barrington Street will be made redundant and demolished as part of the ongoing £100m South Shields 365 regeneration project.
The revamp scheme has brought major change, including the development of a new transport interchange and the opening of The Word library.
And the demolition of part of retail thoroughfare King Street, and the creation of a new cinema, are also planned.
The current car park is a legacy of the razing of the Mile End Road multi-storey car park which closed in the late 1990s and was pulled down around 15 years ago.
Under the multi-storey, described by planners as a “white elephant”, were several small retail outlets and in the late 1980s the Banwells nightclub.
Since its levelling, up to 70 cars have parked at any one time, benefiting from charges as low as 1p per minute.
Council bosses say warning signs will be in place to divert motorists to nearby North Street and Salem Street car parks.
They remain confident demand for spaces will continue to be met by the over 900 other spaces in the town centre.
South Tyneside Council and Muse Developments, partners in South Shields 365, will immediately start site investigation works.
Work on the new 12,000sq-ft Job Centre is expected to begin later this year.
The current Job Centre will be pulled down to free up land and bring forward Phase Three of South Shields 365.
That aims to bring new purpose to the town centre, including an enhanced food and drink and leisure offer.
As part of this phase, a new multi-storey car park is planned for Oyston Street in the town.
Further information about parking in South Shields is available at www.southtyneside.gov.uk/article/38108/Car-parks