£300m deal takes a major step forward

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A MAJOR scheme to modernise sheltered housing accommodation has taken a step forward.

Solutions 4 North Tyneside has been announced as the preferred bidder for North Tyneside Council’s £300m Quality Homes for Older People project.

The group – a consortium of Equitix, Miller and Keepmoat – will deliver more than 900 apartments across ten new and 16 refurbished sheltered housing schemes.

The council will share the proposals with tenants in sheltered accommodation and residents near the sites, hoping to get planning permissions in place by early July.

Work could start later in the year, helping create up to 500 jobs, and officials hope the schemes can be completed by autumn 2016.

Solutions 4 North Tyneside has said it aims to take on 30 per cent of its construction workforce from the borough’s most deprived areas.

Mayor Linda Arkley said: “Announcing Solutions 4 North Tyneside as our preferred bidder is a major milestone and enables us to make some important progress over the next few months.

“The new accommodation will be spacious and of very high quality – exceeding the standard we sought – and designed to enable our tenants to continue living in their home as they grow older.

“This will be a significant construction project, and is expected to be the largest housing project in the region over the next three years.”

David Taylor, bid director on behalf of Solutions 4 North Tyneside, said: “This is the final stage of a lengthy procurement process and the end is now clearly in sight.

“Solutions 4 North Tyneside can, with some gratification, share in the council’s long held vision for state-of-the-art new and upgraded homes for older people in North Tyneside.”