Ruth Mitchell

Member Article

All systems go for Sunderland software centre

CONSTRUCTION is underway at a £10m building that will be the home for 60 software businesses in the region.

The work began this week for the Sunderland Software Centre at Tavistock Place following two weeks of ground works.

The centre, which is due to open next year, aims to bring 140 jobs to the city and continue cementing Sunderland’s and the North East’s reputation as a centre for hi-tech businesses.

The 53,000 sq ft development will have state-of-the-art accommodation, as well as exhibition space, showing visitors in a fun and interactive way, the role software plays in their lives.

Cllr Watson said: “It’s great when a plan comes off the drawing board and construction work really begins.

“This is a tremendously exciting project that underpins the work being done to establish Sunderland and the region as a centre of software excellence.

“The jobs and businesses coming to the centre will also be a boost to this part of the city and its on-going regeneration. I’m looking forward to seeing how this building takes shape and to seeing businesses move in.”

More than 50 software businesses are now active in Sunderland at existing hi-tech facilities such as the City Council’s state-of-the-art Evolve business centre at Rainton Bridge, Business Centre, and the Jupiter Centre at the North East Business and Innovation Centre.

Chief Executive Officer Bernie Callaghan said: “Sunderland’s Economic Masterplan makes clear how important software is to both the city’s present and its future.

“Making sure we have the right infrastructure and the right support to attract and retain software businesses and to help existing firms flourish is crucial in countless areas, from helping local businesses boost their profits and productivity with locally-developed software to creating more opportunities for local young people.”

The new building is being part financed with a £4.75m grant from the European Regional Development Fund, secured through regional development agency One North East, which is also contributing £2.95m to the project.

Sunderland City Council is contributing £2.6m towards the project.

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Ruth Mitchell .

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