The Arlington Richardson Development Partnership has selected Tolent as its contractor for the construction of Phase One Milburngate in Durham City.

The North East-based national contractor will begin construction in the coming weeks following the completion of the final site enabling works, which have been ongoing since January.

The contract includes the construction of 70 percent of the entire Milburngate development, which makes up Phase One of the project on the six-acre riverside site.

This announcement follows the project securing a £120 million forward-funding commitment from LaSalle Investment Management, which is enabling the delivery of the first phase.

Within Phase One will be premises for a number of nationally-recognised leisure operators including boutique cinema company Everyman, restaurant brands Marston’s Pitcher & Piano, Bar + Block, Miller and Carter and a 92-bed flagship Premier Inn hotel.

Tolent will also build 5,000 square metres of speculative offices, creating capacity for more than 400 new jobs, as well as 153 built-to-rent apartments.

This major regeneration scheme in the heart of Durham City is the latest regionally-significant project Tolent has been involved with. Its resumé includes Newcastle City Library, Sunderland’s Beacon of Light and the UK headquarters of global financial services technology company Sage in Gosforth, near Newcastle.

The business has a strong track record in the North East and, having secured more than £120 million of work in the region in the last 12 months, it is ranked in the top five of contractors in the area.

Tolent is currently on-site at two other major developments in the North East, Hadrian’s Tower, soon to be Newcastle’s tallest building, and the extensive Vaux development in Sunderland.

Milburngate is being delivered in joint venture by Durham-based property business Arlington Real Estate and the Richardson family, who together have already successfully delivered a number of strategically-important regeneration projects across the region, including Freemans Reach in Durham City centre.

Ian Beaumont, Project Director for Milburngate, said: “Tolent shares our enthusiasm for Durham City and our commitment to delivering a regionally-significant development.

“We undertook a very detailed and comprehensive selection process to ensure we have a contractor that is able to transform this unique riverside location into the vision we have for Milburngate. We are very pleased to have chosen Tolent and look forward to working closely with them as they begin construction in the next few weeks.”

Andy McLeod, CEO for Tolent, said: “This project is one of the most significant wins in the history of our business, and is testament to the skills, expertise and growth of our team not only in the region, but across the UK.

“It’s always a privilege to be involved in such transformational projects, and the vision for Milburngate is one we’re committed to delivering for our client, and for the community within Durham City.”