One of South Tyneside's new seafront attractions has been named among the North East's best developments in a prestigious awards ceremony.
The £5m Littlehaven Promenade and Seawall project has been crowned the best Infrastructure project at the Royal Institute of Chartered Surveyors (RICS) North East Renaissance Awards 2014 during a special ceremony at Newcastle Civic Centre.
The category recognises outstanding achievement by a project or programme of infrastructure works including projects that deliver essential facilities, services or organisational structure.
Littlehaven was singled out by the judges for "demonstrating value for money and innovative design in addition to improving an already popular destination for locals and tourists."
They also acknowledged the functional aspects of the new works and realigned sea defences, which were recently put to the test by extreme weather conditions. The judges said the "new wall performed extremely well" and they were "impressed with the quality and finish achieved and overall 'Wow' factor."
Councillor Iain Malcolm, Leader of South Tyneside Council, said: "These awards celebrate excellence in the built environment and we are delighted that Littlehaven has been honoured in this way.
"It is a fantastic achievement and recognises the real commitment and determination of all those involved in helping to create attractive public spaces of which we can all be proud.
"Littlehaven is a fantastic cultural attraction providing both residents and visitors with a beautifully-lit promenade where they enjoy stunning views all year round, as well as a providing added protection against coastal erosion and flooding with improved sea defences.
"It is just one of a series of exciting regeneration schemes to be completed in South Shields over the past year, and follows the opening of Haven Point pool and leisure complex by HRH the Duke of Cambridge and the stunning riverside park at Harton Quays. We are also thrilled Harton Quays Park was awarded for the fantastic contribution it makes to the wider regeneration of South Shields."
The Littlehaven Promenade and Seawall project has involved the replacement of the outdated flood defences along a 500-metre stretch between the South Groyne and the River Tyne's South Pier.
The existing beach has been widened and the new promenade and seawall created to take account of the latest projections for the impact of climate change. Other features include the installation of bespoke public art works - Eye and Sail, landscaping, seating and state of the art lighting.
The project was funded by South Tyneside Council, Northumbrian Water and the Environment Agency and delivered by a team including contractors Galliford Try Civil Engineering, engineering consultants Royal Haskoning DHV, landscape architects Oobe and Balfour Beatty Living Places.
Harton Quays Park on South Shields riverside was Highly Commended in the Regeneration category of the awards.
The park is a new public space created on former derelict coal staithes site on South Shields Riverside. The £2.3m park features a curved stone ribbon wall, promenade, striking water feature, landscaping as well as a garden seating areas, a dramatic 'pine grove' viewing point across the river and amphitheatre to host public performances.
The park, which was officially opened by outdoor enthusiast and TV broadcaster Julia Bradbury last November, was jointly funded by South Tyneside Council and the Homes and Communities Agency and delivered in partnership with landscape architects Grant Associates and contractor Balfour Beatty.
For further information about Littlehaven Promenade and Seawall visit www.southtyneside.info/littlehaven More details about Harton Quays Park are available at www.southtyneside.info/southshields365