City residents are being encouraged to “Love Dundee Local” as retail and hospitality businesses reopen following the Coronavirus lockdown.
All shops will be allowed to open their doors from Monday, along with gyms, hotels and visitor attractions. Restaurants, pubs and cafes can also open, with restrictions on their hours and the sale of alcohol.
People in Dundee and the surrounding areas are being encouraged to support local businesses wherever possible, either by shopping in person or online through the Love Dundee Local mobile phone app developed in conjunction with the Dundee & Angus Chamber of Commerce.
Lord Provost Ian Borthwick said: “As the city starts to open up again following the unprecedented challenges of the pandemic, it’s important that we safely support our local businesses as much as we can.
“Lots of our local traders have found ways to adapt during lockdown, such as switching to online sales, and I know they have been well supported by the public.
“The Love Dundee Local app is a great example of that, and it means that people can buy local products from the comfort of their own homes.
“At the same time, I know that business owners have also put a lot of work into measures to ensure the health and wellbeing of customers, and are now looking forward to safely and responsibly opening their doors once again.
“Our city centre in particular has lots of wide pavements and pedestrian areas, as well as green spaces such as Slessor Gardens, so we are confident that our community will be able to enjoy the area safely and responsibly.
“Some premises may look different to how you remember them, and have reduced hours or staff numbers. Please be considerate towards them and your fellow shoppers, following the guidance on physical distancing and hygiene at all times.”
Signage is in place in the city centre and other shopping districts reminding people to maintain social distancing and other hygiene measures.
Council staff have been working closely with shops, hospitality venues and other businesses to help them be COVID-secure and compliant with the latest guidance.
Additional outdoor areas have been created at a number of venues, while Union Street remains closed to traffic to create a vibrant pedestrian area as part of the national Spaces for People programme.
Council leader John Alexander said: “This crisis has created challenges for every sector of the economy.
“We’re working with all of our partners on a range of recovery plans, as well as continuing to deliver business grants which have amounted to tens of millions of pounds over the past year.
“This awful pandemic is not over, and we must continue to follow all the advice and guidance.
“But the easing of restrictions means that we can once again start to carefully enjoy things we have missed over the past few months, whether it be visiting the shops, enjoying a bit of culture or tasting the best of our local hospitality.
“That’s good news for everyone, including businesses, and I’d encourage everyone, whether in person or online, to Love Dundee Local.”
While support from local people will be crucial to the retail and hospitality recovery, the city is also focusing on attracting tourists.
With non-essential journeys between council areas allowed from Monday, but international tourism still restricted, Dundee is well placed to capitalise on domestic travel having been named the UK’s Staycation City of the Year.
A Put Dundee On Your Map marketing campaign is encouraging people from across the country to explore all that the city has to offer.
Councillor Mark Flynn, convener of City Development, said: “Tourism was a key sector of our economy prior to the pandemic, and I’m in no doubt it will be again.
“As a city we have so much to offer, from world class attractions to great hospitality and lovely open spaces. That was rightly recognised with lots of accolades and international media attention.
“We have been working closely with the culture and tourism sectors on their recovery plans, and will be supporting campaigns that encourage people to visit.
“This is going to be a summer of stay at home holidays, so where better to come than the city that was named best in the UK for a staycation?”
Picture shows (left) Lord Provost Ian Borthwick and Councillor Mark Flynn, convener of City Development, displaying Love Dundee Local campaign posters.
Dundee draws skilled workers from a 60-minute catchment population of 640,000 and has a local population of over 140,000. The availability of a large pool of highly skilled labour is a key feature in the Dundee economy. Flexibility in the labour force is currently more prevalent in Dundee than in Scotland as a whole. All forms of labour market flexibility - part-time, temporary employment, self-employment and shift work - are widely operational within the city. Labour force stability in the city is excellent, enabling companies to plan with confidence. Labour turnover levels are less than 5% and absenteeism averages 2%.