All systems go for Software Centre
Work has officially started on the new £10m centrepiece for Sunderland’s growing software industry
Construction 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.
Councillor Paul Watson, the leader of Sunderland City Council joined Sunderland Software City’s Bernie Callaghan and representatives of One North East and BAM Construction at the site today (Friday 18 February).
The 53,000 sq ft development will have state-of-the-art accommodation for 60 software businesses, 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.”
Sunderland Software City is the regional initiative supporting and driving the growth of the North East software industry.
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 companies 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.
“Everyone at Sunderland Software City is excited about the Software Centre project and really looking forward to watching the building take shape over the coming months.”
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.
Lynsey Robinson, ONE One North East’s Service Sector Manager, said: “The construction of Software Centre is a key milestone in the Sunderland Software City project. This facility will become a hub for software development not only in the North East, but across the UK.
“I am delighted that One North East was able to support this vitally important project which strengthens the city’s growing reputation for software development and is an excellent addition to this part of Sunderland’s ongoing regeneration.”