The first residents will be in by year-end. Credit: via Persuasion PR

Vistry closes on first phase finish at West Park Quarter

The first 69 homes at the former Sunderland Civic Centre site are nearing completion, the initial stage of what will be a 265-home development.

The clearing of the old council buildings began in October last year, with regeneration specialist Vistry North East, part of the Vistry Group, at the helm.

Occupying the site of the old surface-level car park, this first new structure comprises 69 one- and two-bedroomed apartments, which will be made available for private rent by Sigma’s build-to-rent brand Simple Life Homes.

The first residents are expected to move in by the end of 2024.

Vistry North East has also now begun work on a further 69 properties for Simple Life – a mix of 50 houses and 19 apartments, as well as new properties for open market sale, through Vistry’s  Linden Homes brand, which are expected to be available to buy later this summer.

Sean Egan, managing director, Vistry North East, said: “Our West Park Quarter project is creating a range of high-quality new homes close to scenic and accessible open green spaces.  These will incorporate plenty of cycling and pedestrian links, improving public access to and from the city centre.

“We have an excellent working relationship with Sigma, having partnered with them on other large-scale developments, most recently at Bishops Park, in Bishop Auckland. We’ve received great feedback on the design and quality of the build and it has been noted how we have been able to deliver on all of the ambitious targets we agreed at the outset.”

The build team are already progressing the next phases. Credit: via Persuasion PR

Egan said that West Park Quarter is a “flagship project” for Vistry North East, highlighting how the deal for the civic centre had paved the way for the council’s move to its landmark City Hall.

Jason Berry, regional managing director for Simple Life Homes, said: “We have been working with Vistry for many years to deliver thousands of homes across the UK, in areas that have an undersupply of build to rent housing.

“After experiencing a high-demand in the North East region for Simple Life homes, we are excited to be introduce West Park Quarter to the area – offering high quality rental homes, matched with a professional approach to renting for local residents of Sunderland.”

West Park Quarter will also include works to recreate St George’s Square – bomb damaged during the Second World War and lost to redevelopment in the 60s – with the grade two-listed St George’s House as the focal point.

Architecture and streetscapes have been planned to be sensitive to existing structures, the parkside location and the Ashbrooke conservation area, the firm said.

Vistry is active right across the region, with projects including the Countryside brand’s King Edward’s Park in Morpeth.

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