Sunderland’s new dual carriageway, linking the Northern Spire bridge to the city centre, has officially opened.
The third phase of the Sunderland Strategic Transport Corridor (SSTC3) project is now complete, after being in progress since May 2019.
The new road has been delivered by Esh Construction on behalf of Sunderland City Council. It forms part of the £70.8m investment by the council to establish a strategic public transport corridor which is aimed at connecting communities to the city centre and relieving congestion while also improving business links.
Councillor Graeme Miller, Leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “The SSTC3 project is an important one for Sunderland, and a key infrastructure investment for the council, providing access to Sunderland City Centre for our communities and aiding community wealth.
“I am delighted to see it completed today and our plans for the future of the city take another step forward.”
Esh’s Chief Executive, Andy Radcliffe, said: “SSTC3 is the largest scheme Esh has delivered in company history and, in doing so, we have employed a local workforce and procured a local supply chain, achieving a magnificent £26m spend within the local area and a 98% North East workforce.
“Collaboration has been key to this projects success from the outset. The impact of a global pandemic and material shortages could never have been predicted, yet the determination to overcome every challenge has been remarkable and a huge testament to everyone involved. I am immensely proud of what has been achieved in the delivery of this project and look forward to continuing this success into all future projects with Sunderland City Council.”
The project itself was carried out to maximise opportunities for local companies and jobs through the supply chain to keep money in the city’s economy.
The overall project saw £26 million re-invested locally and created 32 jobs, employing 19 long-term unemployed people.
More than half of workers are Sunderland residents and 98% were from the wider North East.
Cllr Graeme Miller added: “Throughout the project we have worked closely with suppliers to make sure it was kept ‘local’ where possible. Investing and spending money in the city helps to build community wealth and ultimately benefits more people in Sunderland.”