A LOCALLY-BASED company has been awarded the right to develop a city council’s new headquarters.

Bowmer + Kirkland, whose North-East regional office is on nearby Rainton Bridge Business Park, has won the £42m contract to build Sunderland’s new City Hall.

Designed by award-winning architects Faulkner Brown, the 190,000 sq ft landmark development will be more than double the size of THE BEAM, the first building to be constructed on the former Vaux Brewery site.

Construction is expected to begin later this year, with a completion date set for the autumn of 2021.

The contract-award will benefit both the local people and companies, by way of jobs and spin-off/supply business.

Bowmer + Kirkland is committed to spend £29m in the local supply chain and £9m with small and medium enterprises in the area.

A ‘Meet the Buyer’ event will be staged for local suppliers in coming weeks.

The development is expected to spearhead further regeneration of Sunderland city centre and accelerate transformation of the site.

It will provide a new civic heart, providing a new home for Sunderland City Council alongside public sector partners under the same roof.

Council leader Graeme Miller said: “We’re delighted that the contract to build City Hall has been awarded to a Sunderland-based company, with all the benefits that brings in terms of local jobs created, of money spent with local companies and in the local economy.”

Councillor Miller said the new City Hall will go hand-in-hand with other developments, including a new railway station and better local connectivity, with improved road links and a footbridge planned across the River Wear connecting to the Stadium of Light.

It is the latest key project Bowmer + Kirkland has been involved with in the North-East, including The Word in South Shields, Newcastle University’s Urban Sciences Building and Trinity Square in Gateshead.

Project manager Paul Anderson said: “We’re delighted to be the main contractor on this important building for the city of Sunderland.

“This development will herald the regeneration of the city centre and will also encourage further development and investment, boosting the local economy.”

Companies wishing to register for the ‘Meet the Buyer’ event should register interest via j.heads@bandk.co.uk.