Planning approval represents the first stage of a plan that should eventually deliver 1,000 new homes across four new neighbourhoods.
Igloo Regeration is managing the wider Riverside Sunderland masterplan for Sunderland City Council.
The first 91 houses and 41 apartments, approved this week, are designed by architects Proctor & Matthews and MawsonKerr. Work is due to start on site in summer 2021.
Architect Andrew Matthews, founding director of Proctor & Matthews, said: “The homes at Vaux, inspired by much-loved local typologies, have been designed to cater for a diverse demographic and changing lifestyles. All homes incorporate spaces for home working, a variety of private and shared amenity space and innovative smart technology – all vital components to city centre living in the 21st century.”
Peter McIntyre, executive director of city development at Sunderland City Council, said: “We’re aiming for something really different at Vaux – homes that will not only change the city centre, but that will transform the way our residents live.
“We’re delighted to have taken this important step forward, which paves the way for the first new residential neighbourhood, that will be completed by 2023, in time for our Future Living Expo, an event where we will showcase and celebrate new ways of living and the role new innovations can play in delivering a better quality of life for our people.”
Igloo chief executive Peter Connolly said: “The people of Sunderland have really embraced what we’re trying to do at Vaux, so planning approval is a massive step forward for the city and its focus on sustainability, and on its vision to be carbon neutral by 2040.
“The world has changed so much in the last year, people value their homes more, and recognise how important low carbon and smart technology will be as our lifestyles change, as well as the benefits to our own wellbeing and that of local wildlife. We believe that what we have planned for Vaux will continue to embrace this realignment that communities and individuals are facing in terms of true work/life balance, localisation and wellbeing as we emerge from the pandemic.”
The wider masterplan for Riverside Sunderland also includes a new central business district with one million sq ft of office space, a new site for Sunderland’s Eye Hospital and a library.