Sunderland’s ambitious residential plans at Vaux have won a prestigious national award, recognising their excellence.

Sunderland City Council’s innovative new housing development, which will be a centrepiece of the Riverside Sunderland urban quarter, has scooped the Homes England Masterplanning Award at the 2022 Housing Design Awards, recognising the trailblazing nature of the properties being built.

The scheme, which will deliver 132 new homes, was showcased last week, just days after work got started by contractor Tolent on the stunning riverside community.

The Vaux neighbourhood forms the first phase of Riverside Sunderland’s transformation and was developed as part of a masterplan by Proctor and Matthews and local architects Faulkner Browns.

Vaux, (master planned by Proctor and Matthews) includes detailed designs by both Proctor and Matthews and Mawson Kerr Architects and has been designed as an exemplar of high-density city living and working.

The neighbourhood is inspired by the history and rich cultural heritage of Sunderland, while adopting Smart City infrastructure, and a sustainable development model that will contribute to the city’s carbon-neutral ambition.

Vaux will provide 91 houses and 41 apartments, with housing arranged in five clusters creating a series of sheltered mews streets and courtyards; each with a distinctive character.

Three house types, inspired by property types that once existed on the riverside, have been designed to suit 21st century living.

Councillor Graeme Miller, leader of Sunderland City Council, said: “Our plans for Riverside Sunderland are ambitious, and – more and more – the developments we are bringing forward are being recognised nationally.  It’s brilliant to have our plans showcased in this way and to have won this award.”

Vaux is part of a wider city commitment to become a low-carbon economy, be carbon neutral by 2030, digitally connected, enable people to live healthier lives, provide access to natural assets and deliver clean, green, and safe neighbourhoods.

The development is due to be completed in time for Expo Sunderland, a public event that will showcase a new way of city living and the transformation of Riverside Sunderland into one of the UK’s most sustainable and liveable cities for the 21st Century.

Vaux housing is part of an ambitious and exciting masterplan for Riverside Sunderland that will include residential, commercial and leisure developments, aims to double the residential population in the city centre and increase employment by 50 per cent.

It also fits with the city’s housing strategy, which will see 7,000 new homes built by 2030.

Vaux housing is being delivered with £6.1m of grant support from the Government’s Levelling Up Fund, £2.1m from the Department of Levelling Up Housing and Communities to support the delivery of the Homes of 2030, and £2m from the European Regional Development Fund to support the delivery of a smart energy network.

To stay up to date with Riverside Sunderland developments, visit or follow @RiversideSund on social media.