Designed by SimpsonHaugh, the two buildings will comprise one-, two- and three-bedroom homes and is scheduled for completion in 2018.

The Smokehouses are being constructed by Robertson North East England, whose regional managing director Garry Hope said: "We are delighted to be a part of this momentous regeneration scheme; the site is abuzz with activity and it won't be long before the community can start to see the Smokehouses take shape."

Nigel Brewer, project director at Places for People, said there is a "swathe of activity" on site.

"The buildings are another brilliant addition to the community we're creating at Smith's Dock and a demonstration of our commitment to bringing the site's overall masterplan to life – something which will ultimately bring a variety of new and exciting space including a green public space, homes, workspace, as well as a retail and leisure offering," he added.

David Green, partner at SimpsonHaugh, said The Smokehouses design takes inspiration from the existing industrial buildings along the quayside.

"These buildings are referenced in a contemporary manner, using strong forms articulated at ground and upper levels through the use of pitched roofs, robust materials and simple rectangular openings," he added. Smith's Dock, which dates back to 1851, closed in 1987 having once employed thousands.

Regeneration business Places for People bought the site in 2006 and went to work spending £20m on improvement works.

In a joint venture with Urban Splash, the company is now working on an 850-home project.

As part of the masterplan, renowned architect and property expert George Clarke is to create 10 FAB Houses having confirmed his intention to move into the modular housing market.

 

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