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Spence's Wear Bridge backed by council

After three years, Sunderland Council says it will support Spence's Wear Bridge

Spence Associates and Techniker's Wear Bridge in Sunderland is a significant step closer to being realised after the council agreed to back the scheme this week.

The decision follows a public consultation which saw Wearsiders choose Spence’s 210m-tall bridge over a more basic, flatbeam alternative.

However, the council is now claiming it will have to find an extra £30 million to fund Spence’s bridge.

Sunderland Council leader Paul Watson told the Sunderland Echo that he was behind the scheme, but did not expect taxpayers to foot the bill.

Watson said: ‘It's what all of us in our hearts want. I think it's what the city deserves. This would be the one thing that everybody in Sunderland would point to as being a symbol of the city, and it would also be a symbol of the city to the outside world nationally and internationally.’

Stephen Spence told the AJ that the bridge will be formally considered by the cabinet for approval in December.

It is the first piece of good news for both Spence and engineer Techniker since they beat Frank Gehry to design the scheme in a competition three years ago.

The council says it will now look into how much the bridge will cost.

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