£100k-a-year money pot to help im­prove city shop­ping

Evening Telegraph (First Edition) - - Uk World Today - BY JON BRADY

DUNDEE’S dis­trict shop­ping ar­eas are set to ben­e­fit from a half-a-mil­lion-pound fund­ing pot.

Coun­cil­lors have rub­ber-stamped the cash, which will be split into five £100,000 lots from 2018/19.

The money will help fi­nance a se­ries of im­prove­ments — from street fur­ni­ture to brand­ing — in ar­eas like Perth Road, Broughty Ferry, Al­bert Street, Lochee and else­where.

It’s part of ef­forts to help sup­port re­tail­ers in main shop­ping streets away from the city cen­tre.

Coun­cil­lor Fraser Macpher­son, who rep­re­sents the West End and has cam­paigned for the Perth Road area to be given its own brand­ing along with other im­prove­ments, wel­comed moves by the coun­cil’s SNP ad­min­is­tra­tion to bring in the cash.

The city’s Lib Dem leader told the Tele: “We dis­cussed the is­sue with both Labour and the SNP af­ter the elec­tions.

“We said there needed to be some in­fra­struc­ture and cap­i­tal fund­ing to en­cour­age growth in dis­trict shop­ping cen­tres.

“Fel­low Lib Dem Craig Dun­can and I both have shop­ping cen­tres in our wards but we weren’t talk­ing about ours in par­tic­u­lar — there are many oth­ers across the city.

“It’s ab­so­lutely a step in the right di­rec­tion.”

Mr Macpher­son added that while it was too early to say ex­actly how the money would be spent, there were sev­eral pos­si­bil­i­ties be­ing con­sid­ered.

“There are var­i­ous things the money could be spent on,” he said.

“We could be talk­ing about things such as en­vi­ron­men­tal im­prove­ments and seat­ing ar­eas.

“But we’re also go­ing to look at things like try­ing to make ar­eas at­trac­tive. It could be i nfras­truc­ture im­prove­ments, it could be other things like on­line pro­mo­tion or cre­at­ing a brand for the area.

“In the West End we have rep­re­sen­ta­tives from all the par­ties and we all want what’s good for the city.

“This is an is­sue that there is cross­party sup­port for. We all want to see our lo­cal shop­ping cen­tres grow and ex­pand in the com­ing years and this cap­i­tal fund­ing will as­sist this to hap­pen.”

Ferry coun­cil­lor Mr Dun­can added: “Any new fund­ing to as­sist Broughty Ferry and other shop­ping ar­eas across Dundee is very wel­come and I am keen that there is con­sul­ta­tion to en­sure this is put to best use.”

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