Bid to highlight aims of Dundee business scheme


26th February 2015

The Dundee city centre business community will be told next week that a Business Improvement District can increase trade and add to civic pride.

Alastair Mitchell, a key figure in the successful BID project in Falkirk, will address an opening evening in the Malmaison Hotel highlighting the objectives of the proposed Dundee BID.

Tuesday’s event is for eligible voters, stakeholders and interested members of the public, and is on the first day of voting for the project after distribution of the Dundee BID business plan and ballot papers.

The BID is a business-led initiative supported by levy payers in the city centre, and proceeds are used to fund initiatives designed to enhance the traditional commercial heart of the city.

The investment budget would be in excess of £1.6 million over five years. The BID would only spend money on services that are in addition to baseline council services.

Mr Mitchell of Falkirk Delivers will be on the platform with members of the Dundee BID Steering Group and Dundee BID consultant Neil Cooney to explain what the Falkirk BID has achieved as it enters its seventh year.

He said: “The BID acts as a working collective, giving the business community a strong voice not to mention a whole host of benefits.

“In Falkirk, businesses wanted a focus on ‘green, clean and safe’ — objectives which we are not only meeting but exceeding. Through independent validation, our city centre is cleaner, we have also made the streets safer with the introduction of taxi marshals, a ‘Best Bar None’ accreditation and countless events from a comedy festival to fantastic festive events.

“Not only have we stabilised footfall within the town but come up with some great ideas in spite of council cuts, from the ‘park free after 3’ campaign to a hanging basket for every shop when council cuts meant the end of hanging baskets.

“There have also been significant cost savings for business through procurement and success in securing funding to ensure that these enhancements are sustainable.”

Dundee BID Steering Group chairman Jon Walton said: “As the business plans and ballot papers prepare to be distributed, we are excited to be reaching this pivotal stage in the project, and the official start of the Dundee BID campaign.

“We would urge all city centre businesses to grasp this opportunity and, whether they are in support of the initiative or not or remain undecided, we encourage them along to this event to help answer any questions and outline the tangible results which the Dundee BID proposes following our in-depth consultation with what the businesses themselves want.”

Tuesday’s free event is at 6pm, with the doors open at 5.30pm.

Businesses have until April 7 to vote.

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