Route 19 puts Cobalt on map

The opening of a new integrated transport system on North Tyneside has brought a workforce of 580,000 within 30 minutes of Cobalt Park.

The opening of a new integrated transport system on North Tyneside has brought a workforce of 580,000 within 30 minutes of Cobalt Park.

Developed by Nexus, Route 19 - whose timetable is programmed to shift-working at Cobalt - is now operational and computers at offices will alert people when their bus home is due.

John Hume, senior manager for strategic regeneration at North Tyneside Council, said: "It is probably unique to have a dedicated public transport system like this for a business park.

"We are working with major employers to make them aware of Route 19. Cobalt is very accessible and sustainable, with on-site leisure and retail facilities nearby. It ticks all the boxes."

Improved access to the North Shields Ferry Terminal and a planned second tunnel crossing of the Tyne also gives improved access to the South Tyneside workforce.

"There has been a tradition in the area of working very close to home, but a lot of those opportunities have gone," said Mr Hume.

"There is a current shortage of large-scale employment sites in South Tyneside, so it is important for the sub-region to improve access to opportunities in North Tyneside.

"Cobalt is one of the best business parks in the country. We have a superb partnership with the developers, Highbridge.

"We continue to be impressed by the sheer quality of the scheme. They have attracted the right calibre of firms and we welcome the job opportunities with open arms.

"What we want for Cobalt is to be a site for inward investors from overseas and elsewhere in the UK.

"It fully meets the business requirements of the 21st Century."

A new Metro interchange at Percy Main has already been completed, and a new Metro and bus interchange, to be called Northumberland Park, is the final link in Route 19, and will open in September.

Guy Marsden, director of Highbridge Business Park, said: "The £12m multi-modal transport network allows easy access to jobs like those being generated at Cobalt."

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