Chief executive David Mawson lauded the scale of ambition. Credit: via Boutique

BTR specialist at the double in Sunderland

Build-to-rent provider Placefirst has been named preferred development partner for 140 homes at Riverside Sunderland, and will also support the city council with 80 homes at Sunniside.

The 1,000-home, mixed-use Riverside Sunderland is perhaps the city’s most significant regeneration project, and Farringdon Row will be the second residential neighbourhood within the masterplan.

Placefirst is tasked with delivering an exemplar energy-efficient neighbourhood that will benefit from views across the Wear and the regenerated Riverside Park.

The project team features local architect IDP, development consultant Identity Consult and landscape architect Southern Green.

A planning application is anticipated later in the year, with development planned to start in spring 2024.

Placefirst will also support Sunderland City Council and partners in the funding and delivery of up to 80 homes at Nile and Villiers in Sunniside, which Placefirst will then own and manage. The scheme forms part of the Council’s ‘city centre housing ecosystem’ which received support from round one of the Levelling Up Fund.

The developer’s portfolio of single-family rental homes across the North East already includes the 116-home Scholars View in Hetton-le-Hole which completed in 2022, and The Oaks in Esh Winning, where builders are on site.

Plans were submitted this month for Benwell Dene, a 146-home project west of Newcastle.

David Mawson, chief executive at Placefirst, said: “The Riverside Sunderland masterplan is one of the most ambitious residential regeneration projects in the UK and Farringdon Row and Nile Villiers will play a big part in setting the standard for BTR developments throughout the North East.

“We look forward to progressing with the plans and bringing both these schemes to life, bringing much needed quality new rental homes to the area.”

Patrick Melia, chief executive of Sunderland City Council, said: “The rate of transformation at Riverside Sunderland is rapid, and reflects our determination and ambition to make this a world-class place to live, work and play.

“Building high-quality homes in exciting new communities is key to our plan for Riverside Sunderland, and we’re delighted to be working in partnership with Placefirst to bring forward the second residential scheme in this game-changing new urban quarter.”

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