WORK has started on building North Tyneside’s first new council houses for several years.
A former temporary accommodation unit for the homeless in George Street, close to the centre of North Shields, is being converted into family homes by North Tyneside Council.
The building, formerly split into 22 flats, is being turned into permanent housing for rent by Kier North Tyneside.
The 12 three-bedroom houses it is creating will be let through Tyne and Wear Homes, a lettings partnership formed by the north east’s local authorities and social landlords.
The £850,000 revamp is expected to be complete by December.
Borough mayor Linda Arkley said: “This property previously provided temporary housing for male adults, but is now surplus to requirements due to our success in reducing the need for this type of accommodation.
“I believe the scheme will be extremely popular based on demand for similar properties in the area.
“This project – and also the plans for the nearby former Grange Kitchens site – show how we’re determined to work with partners to deliver sustainable regeneration in North Shields town centre and the fish quay areas.”
Two of the homes will be adapted to accommodate potential tenants with special needs.
Kier’s regional director, Mike Furze, said, “Providing well-equipped and suitable homes for families is one of our top priorities.”
“By installing new adaptations and equipment in these homes, we will be able to offer specialist facilities for disabled residents to live alongside able-bodied residents, which we hope will increase social inclusion and encourage community spirit.”