Flick­ing the switch on the ‘City of Light’

perth: De­sign­ers in­vited to ten­der bids for coun­cil’s £12m project to light up Fair City sites

The Courier & Advertiser (Perth and Perthshire Edition) - - NEWS - Jamie buchan jabuchan@the­courier.co.uk

De­sign­ers are be­ing urged to com­pete for work on a daz­zling £12 mil­lion plan to trans­form Perth into Scot­land’s “City of Light”.

The highly-an­tic­i­pated project would see land­mark build­ings il­lu­mi­nated with colour­ful spot­lights and mov­ing pro­jec­tions.

The plan ini­tially proved con­tro­ver­sial be­cause of its hefty price tag, but coun­cil bosses be­lieve a pi­lot scheme on High Street and this year’s Nor­rie-Miller Trail has helped to sway public opin­ion.

The lo­cal au­thor­ity has pledged £5 mil­lion to­wards the plan, with the re­main­der of the fund­ing from prop­erty own­ers and the Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment.

Now, the con­tract to de­sign and in­stall the light­ing has gone out to ten­der. In its brief to po­ten­tial bid­ders, Perth and Kin­ross Coun­cil states the work will be rolled out over six years. Com­pa­nies have un­til mid­day on July 28 to get their ten­ders in.

Last month coun­cil of­fi­cers held talks to give prospec­tive de­vel­op­ers the low­down on the plan, said to be the first of its kind in Scot­land.

A lo­cal au­thor­ity spokesman said: “The City of Light Ac­tion Plan was de­vised in 2016 and iden­ti­fied a com­pre­hen­sive ap­proach to the light­ing of build­ings and spa­ces through­out the city.

“The coun­cil re­quire to pro­cure ex­ter­nal ser­vices for the pro­vi­sion of ar­chi­tec­tural/fea­ture light­ing de­sign in­clud­ing con­cep­tual art, draft and de­tailed draw­ings, along with elec­tri­cal de­sign and devel­op­ment ser­vices to as­sess and pre­pare costs and con­tract doc­u­men­ta­tion.”

The win­ning firm will also be asked to sup­ply, in­stall and main­tain the light­ing.

Alan Farnington, part of the team lead­ing the project, said it could not only re­vive Perth’s flag­ging nightlife, but may even help im­prove safety by po­ten­tially re­duc­ing crime and van­dal­ism.

He said events held dur­ing day­light hours in Perth and Kin­ross were usu­ally well at­tended, but vis­i­tors would leave by night­fall. “We hope this will make it more at­trac­tive for peo­ple – res­i­dents and vis­i­tors – to stay on in the city in the even­ing,” he said.

“We need to get peo­ple say­ing: ‘Let’s go to Perth and Kin­ross at night­time, be­cause it looks so wel­com­ing’.”

About 40 rep­re­sen­ta­tives of com­pa­nies from around the UK at­tended the pre­sen­ta­tion at North Muir­ton Com­mu­nity Cam­pus.

Draft City of Light de­signs were re­leased last year, show­ing how the scheme could look. Coun­cil­lors agreed to spend £100,000 light­ing up the lo­cal au­thor­ity’s High Street head­quar­ters.

Other sites which could be il­lu­mi­nated in­clude Queen’s Bridge, the main city centre precinct and Kin­noull Hill tower. Per­ma­nent in­fra­struc­ture could be in­stalled to host reg­u­lar light­ing events at the river­side area.

We need to get peo­ple say­ing: ‘Let’s go to Perth and Kin­ross at night­time, be­cause it looks so wel­com­ing’. ALAN FARNINGTON

Pic­ture: Ian Pot­ter.

Around 50,000 peo­ple vis­ited the Norie-Miller Trail, above, in Jan­uary, sur­pass­ing all ex­pec­ta­tions.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from UK

© PressReader. All rights reserved.