South Shields to get £100m redevelopment
South Tyneside Council has launched a £100 masterplan to redevelop the town centre of South Shields.
The plan – South Shields 365 – includes proposals for a new cinema, library, retail and leisure facilities.
Council Leader, Iain Malcolm, said: ‘Like high streets across the country, South Shields town centre is facing major challenges as a result of the rise of online shopping, out of town retail parks and the tough economic climate.
‘These threats have reduced town centre footfall and the shocking fact is that for every £100 of disposable income in their pockets, our residents spend only £3.70 in South Shields town centre.
'It has become very clear that the town centre needs to change if it is to prosper. We cannot turn the clock back.
'Our vision for South Shields is to make it a place of year round cultural, leisure and retail activity for residents, businesses and visitors. We recognise the need to offer an experience that people cannot get on the Internet or at out of town retail parks.’
The masterplan proposes the redevelopment of Fowler Street West, creating a new retail quarter for the town. There are also plans for a new hotel with conferencing facilities, opportunities for new housing, and improved links between the town centre, riverside and sea front.
The council believes the masterplan will complement its regeneration plans for Hebburn town centre, which include the construction of a new community hub with a swimming pool, gym, library and customer service centre later this year.
This is an increasingly common tale that there is spend leakage from towns, because we allowed large out of town centres to develop. The danger now is spending huge amounts of money on trying to compete with those places that are now well established - I cannot believe that South Shields will be able to trump the Metro Centre as an attraction for the young spenders - so the idea to look at a retail, community and cultural mix is a good one!John Orchard, Added: Tuesday, 8 January 2013 05:17 PM
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