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Old October 7th, 2010, 01:22 PM   #141
sterock85
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This is excellent news, ----from the Echo, ----



Hundreds of jobs in storeSponsored by Lumley Castle

Published on Wed Oct 06 12:45:39 BST 2010


TWO new superstores could create up to 1,300 jobs for Sunderland, and free the Vaux site for development.


Sainsbury’s today revealed plans for a new store and petrol station on the Jennings car showroom site in Riverside Road, Southwick – bringing 500 much-needed jobs to Wearside’s recession-weary economy.

It came as councillors approved Tesco’s application for a major outlet on the run-down Sunderland Retail Park, in Roker, creating 800 jobs.

That scheme is expected to end the long-running dispute over the Vaux site, as Tesco has agreed in principle to sell it to Sunderland Council for development.


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Old October 7th, 2010, 08:52 PM   #142
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Too right mate. Its excellent news, in fact its better than excellent.

Not only is it creating a huge number of jobs for local residents when jobs are hard to come by, its regenerating a derelict retail park on a key approach to the city centre and its providing significantly more retail offer for the north side of the city.

Most importantly, though, its going to free up the Vaux site for development. The Vaux site really has the ability to transform the city centre and the economic fortunes of the city as a whole.
Whilst I wholeheartedly agree, do you really think we will see anything happen with the site in the next 5-10years? I just cant see it, especially given the current climate, and all the government cuts.

Sorry if im pessimistic, forgive me i am a sunderland fan....
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Old October 8th, 2010, 02:52 AM   #143
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Whilst I wholeheartedly agree, do you really think we will see anything happen with the site in the next 5-10years? I just cant see it, especially given the current climate, and all the government cuts.

Sorry if im pessimistic, forgive me i am a sunderland fan....


You can be forgiven for your pessimism based on the gridlock of the past ten years, and I am a Sunderland fan too, but we can apportion much of the blame to Tesco. Looking elsewhere in the region, not just at the brewery site in Newcastle, but at Manhattan Gate in Middlesbrough and the mixed use developments at Gateshead Quays, important regeneration work has gone ahead despite the recession. Sunderland should be no different.
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Old October 8th, 2010, 11:00 AM   #144
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Whilst I wholeheartedly agree, do you really think we will see anything happen with the site in the next 5-10years? I just cant see it, especially given the current climate, and all the government cuts.

Sorry if im pessimistic, forgive me i am a sunderland fan....
Yes I do actually.

We all know that the Vaux development is critical to things happening in the rest of the city, and we know that it has been incredibly frustrating, but we have to realise why exactly things haven't happened so far.

The site has been in the ownership of a massive, powerful private company for years now, and so the financial clout of the public sector was never going to prize it away from them with funding alone. It is ultimately the planning system that has forced them out and forced them to build a supermarket elsewhere to an appropriate scale in an appropriate location.

Once the planning system had made it clear that they couldn't build a supermarket on the site, Tesco quite understandably wanted to get the best possible price for their asset, and have therefore held out in the knowledge that the public sector has been desperate to acquire this site and that a 'result' is so important in political terms. However, Tesco aren't daft. They realise that if they don't sell the site now, they possibly won't for another 10 years as the public purse is tightening and no private sector developer would be able to raise the capital finance to develop the site without public sector aid.

As far as I am aware, the funding to purchase the site is coming from Sunderland City Council and One North East will complete the transaction on their behalf. Sunderland City Council will then take ownership of the land and work with the appointed developer and the Economic Development Company, which Sunderland arc will soon become (expect an announcement soon on this).

So basically, the deal is safe, as far as I can see. A developer has been chosen and a development agreement will come forward once the land transaction is complete. The phasing of development will be affected by market conditions, but I would expect the first phase to come forward immediately.
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Old October 8th, 2010, 11:56 AM   #145
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Makes sense, --and I hope your right, --fingers crossed.
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Old October 10th, 2010, 07:31 PM   #146
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The clothing chain Bank, which has recently opened a store on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, is opening in the Market Square Mall of the Bridges, next week.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 10:43 AM   #147
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I have heard that SAFC are definately NOT going to open their own outlet in the Bridges and are just keeping their Debenhams outlet.

Seems a strange decision.
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Old October 11th, 2010, 11:28 AM   #148
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The clothing chain Bank, which has recently opened a store on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, is opening in the Market Square Mall of the Bridges, next week.

Thats good news, ---can't be many units empty now.
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Old October 14th, 2010, 12:31 PM   #149
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Primark/Bridges proposal gets the thumbs up from shoppers, ----84% of people said they approve of the proposal to build a Primark in the Expansion of the Bridges, ----the Council will decide on the proposed Development later this month, --and if it goes through, --work could begin earl next year.
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Old October 14th, 2010, 07:14 PM   #150
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The clothing chain Bank, which has recently opened a store on Northumberland Street, Newcastle, is opening in the Market Square Mall of the Bridges, next week.
it opened last week. New JD Soprts opens on the 23rd Oct & looks like Maplin Electronics is moving into the old Ponden Mill store next to WH Smiths
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Old October 15th, 2010, 10:44 AM   #151
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it opened last week. New JD Soprts opens on the 23rd Oct & looks like Maplin Electronics is moving into the old Ponden Mill store next to WH Smiths


That's great news. When im shopping, that's the only shop I have to go to Newcastle for. I won't have to go anywhere near the place now

Seriously though, Sunderland seems to be attracting a series of quality retailers recently. I just hope that this continues to the extent that Land Securities decide to further develop the Bridges, either into the Crowtree Leisure Centre land or around Market Square, which is in desperate need of renewal, in my opinion.
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Old October 18th, 2010, 07:20 PM   #152
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H Samuals are moving into the old Barretts Shoe Shop
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Old October 19th, 2010, 11:06 AM   #153
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H Samuals are moving into the old Barretts Shoe Shop

Barretts, -- was this the shop that used to be at the corner of the two malls? ---if so I think it's a good location for any retailer.
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Old October 19th, 2010, 02:47 PM   #154
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Bad news, --this from the Echo, --



Axe falls on £180m scheme that could have revitalised city centre
How the Holmeside triangle could have looked.

Published on Tue Oct 19 13:19:50 BST 2010


A £180million city centre retail development with the North East’s highest building at its core is now off the cards.


 The redevelopment of the “Holmeside Triangle” – which would have created 1,700 jobs and included the 100m high Spirit of Sunderland tower – was thrown into doubt earlier this year when one of the companies behind it went into administration.

Hopes were originally high the development would go ahead, but now Dave Smith, chief executive of Sunderland City Council, has admitted the development is on the rocks.

He said: “There’s no real prospect of Holmeside being developed into a retail centre in the immediate future. What we do have is continuing discussions with Land Securities about opportunities for the development of the Bridges over a period of time. I think it’s off the cards at the moment,”

Dr Smith said the council would “evaluate opportunities” for retail and other uses at Holmeside.

Vince Taylor, head of strategic economic development at the council, said consultants DTZ were now looking at Holmeside and officers were awaiting the outcome of their work.

Turn to Page 3


The Holmeside development was caught up in the collapse of Thornfield Ventures, a non-trading holding company which was part of the Thornfield Group, in January.

Just a month earlier, Sunderland arc boss David Walker revealed talks were underway on securing the main tenants for the Holmeside development.

He said Thornfield – which was to build the new retail centre –boasted it was the company that always delivers.

The council signed a development deal with Thornfield in June 2009. A planning application had been due this summer with work due to start in early 2013 and end in 2015.

To seal the deal, the council and the developer signed an “exclusivity agreement”, which gauranteed the authority would not free up council-owned land for competing developments which might have jeopardised the Holmeside project.

It also blocked the redevelopment of certain kinds of retail and leisure development at Jacky White’s market and Crowtree Leisure Centre, leading to a challenge from Bridge’s owner Land Securities and attracting criticism over the council’s handling of the deal from Sunderland Conservatives.

Sunderland Tory leader Tony Morrissey said yesterday the news of the Holmeside development’s demise was a “mixed blessing” as it gave the opportunity to have a fresh look at how to develop the area.

He added: “We need to create a city centre which will attract people back to live and work there, and it still needs a lot of work.”

Dr Smith’s comments were made as part of the launch of Sunderland’s Economic Masterplan yesterday. See Page 4 for full coverage.

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Old October 19th, 2010, 05:55 PM   #155
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Very disappointing.

Would have been a development that for me would have completely changed the outlook of Sunderland. This development along with the Vaux development would have nearly doubled the size of Sunderland retail and office space.

Gutted, but probably not that surprised


I'm not that clued up on financial stuff and how such developments work, but it seems whilst NewcastleGateshead were being transformed further in the late 90s/early 00s we were missing out and left it too late for 'grand' developments to happen.

Imagine a Sunderland with the Holmside development/Spirit of Sunderland, Vaux development, New Bridge, Stadium Village = bridge link to Vaux, further Sunniside developments, Train station upgraded at street level & Bridges extended to cover Market Square and the Crowtree. Plus smaller improvements to high street west/buildings/Blandford Street. So much potential to make Sunderland a good city. With all the extra offices and retail the place would be thriving.

And sorry I'm just rambling now so sorry if it all seems to make no sense, but it's so frustrating that most of this won't happen.
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Old October 20th, 2010, 10:55 AM   #156
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Very disappointing.

Would have been a development that for me would have completely changed the outlook of Sunderland. This development along with the Vaux development would have nearly doubled the size of Sunderland retail and office space.

Gutted, but probably not that surprised


I'm not that clued up on financial stuff and how such developments work, but it seems whilst NewcastleGateshead were being transformed further in the late 90s/early 00s we were missing out and left it too late for 'grand' developments to happen.

Imagine a Sunderland with the Holmside development/Spirit of Sunderland, Vaux development, New Bridge, Stadium Village = bridge link to Vaux, further Sunniside developments, Train station upgraded at street level & Bridges extended to cover Market Square and the Crowtree. Plus smaller improvements to high street west/buildings/Blandford Street. So much potential to make Sunderland a good city. With all the extra offices and retail the place would be thriving.

And sorry I'm just rambling now so sorry if it all seems to make no sense, but it's so frustrating that most of this won't happen.


I Know how you feel marra, ----and although this is disappointing news, --and there's probably more on the way, -------there are some positive things to look forward too, -- ie Tescos planned Development --which will create hundreds of jobs, --but more importantly they are selling the Vaux site, --and hopefully we will see something happening on that site within 12 months, ---also there's Sainsbury, --and also the Software City Building to start next year too, ---so a few things to look forward too, cheers.
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Old October 20th, 2010, 11:05 AM   #157
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I certainly agree that this is disapointing but unsurprising news. Of course I'm going to blame sunderland arc for failing yet again, but in all honesty it's not in any way a unique problem to sunderland. All over the UK there have been many projects - maybe even the majority - that have fallen through. It's the same in Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester, London, Birmingham, Glasgow etc. Everywhere people are saying if only such and such a project was built, thing would be amazing. Sometimes I just get the impression the half of the grand plans are nothing but false schemes to raise land value.

Personally If I had my way I'd shift the focus to the area around the central station. Basically completely demolish the entire street above the station and build something much more substantial - 5 or 6 storeys the whole length of the street from high street to holmside with retail on the lower 2 floors and appartments or offices above.
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Old October 20th, 2010, 11:17 AM   #158
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I certainly agree that this is disapointing but unsurprising news. Of course I'm going to blame sunderland arc for failing yet again, but in all honesty it's not in any way a unique problem to sunderland. All over the UK there have been many projects - maybe even the majority - that have fallen through. It's the same in Leeds, Newcastle, Manchester, London, Birmingham, Glasgow etc. Everywhere people are saying if only such and such a project was built, thing would be amazing. Sometimes I just get the impression the half of the grand plans are nothing but false schemes to raise land value.

Personally If I had my way I'd shift the focus to the area around the central station. Basically completely demolish the entire street above the station and build something much more substantial - 5 or 6 storeys the whole length of the street from high street to holmside with retail on the lower 2 floors and appartments or offices above.

Yes the news of the Holmeside Triangles demise is not unexpected, ---and like you say, --quite a few Developments around the Country have gone the same way, ---but hopefully they can have another look at this area, --and maybe come up with new plans.
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Old October 20th, 2010, 05:09 PM   #159
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I'm not that clued up on financial stuff and how such developments work, but it seems whilst NewcastleGateshead were being transformed further in the late 90s/early 00s we were missing out and left it too late for 'grand' developments to happen.
That is a little simplistic but has elements of truth. Sunderland as a retail centre cannot compete with Newcastle; Newcastle's position in the North East retail hierarchy goes back a lot further than the 90s however whilst most councils have been able to facilitate development and improve town and city centres Sunderland have dilly-dallied, the prime example being Vaux. Allowing Tesco to buy that was a terrible decision. One of Sunderland City Centre's main detractors is the fact its office and indeed urban provision is vastly less than Newcastle - the out of town office developments born out of the Enterprize Zones have seen to that. A city centre needs a good mix of work, retail and leisure facilities to thrive. Driving offices out of the city and the inability to realise key sites like Vaux in times of prosperity I'm afraid means Sunderland has somewhat missed the boat.

re. Holmeside, this is actually a sensible decision. The original scheme was a pipe dream in a good market, never mind the current one. It is also in a terrible location. It is cut off from the retail core and massively constrained by the railway line, not to mention Mecca Bingo will be hugely expensive to acquire compulsorily. If Vaux is to go ahead on even a small scale and bring people back into the centre during the day then extra comparison retail development needs to be focussed towards that end of town. The Bridges are looking at expanding towards Crowtree and High Street West which is more sensible.

There is not a great deal of demand for retail occupiers to take new space and you only need to look at Newcastle to see even new developments (Eldon Square) is mostly displacing retail from elsewhere in the centre, with Northumberland Street suffering. Also realistically very few retail schemes are going to go ahead in the next few years, since the downturn I think only Leeds Trinity in the entire north of the country has started construction and that was already 2/3s let. Eldon Square started development prior to the downturn and again had commitments on lettings to enable finance.
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Old November 2nd, 2010, 04:48 PM   #160
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I saw an interesting article, which I have scanned in, in Property Week magazine:



It seems very positive overall, especially the comments from the portfolio manager regarding how busy and how surprised retailers are that the centre is so busy.

This is what I have always thought about Sunderland. It seems to have a potentially large enough catchment area in terms of access and population as anywhere else in the North East, and has the population there to exploit. The retail centre is busy as it is but the main problem is that a lot of people from Sunderland tend to shop elsewhere, it's not like they don't shop at all. If enough quality retailers come on board and quality 'transformational' developments happen, I think we could not only see a claw-back of leakage from NCL and MC, but also see more people being drawn into the centre from wider areas such as Seaham, Hartlepool, Peterlee, Durham and even South Tyneside.

It looks to me like Land Securities are starting to show some faith in the city and in its spending power.

I have heard on the grapevine that a major department store is close to committing to becoming the anchor tenant for ANOTHER extension of the Bridges. I don't know where the new development will be but I hope that it involves the development of Crowtree.

Last edited by YorkshireMackem; November 3rd, 2010 at 11:22 AM. Reason: Sorry, have edited to include a revised scan. Cheers!
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