Chamber welcomes Eden Project feasibility study in Dundee


28th May 2020

The Eden Project is to begin work on a feasibility study for a proposed new project in Dundee

Eden is working with Dundee City Council and the University of Dundee and the study is being supported by businesses and institutions in the area.

The proposal – provisionally known as Eden Project Scotland - is part of Eden’s portfolio of international projects which also includes developments in China, Australia, New Zealand and Costa Rica as well as UK projects including in Morecambe, Derry~Londonderry and Portland.

The feasibility study, which is due to commence in early June, will establish a suitable site for the project, begin developing content ideas and explore the potential for creating jobs and boosting the regional economy.

Like every Eden Project around the world, Eden Project Scotland will be transformational and regenerative with an overarching theme of humanity’s connection to the natural world.

The original Eden Project, located near St Austell in Cornwall, opened in March 2001 and boasts the world-famous geodesic Biomes, one of which houses the world’s biggest undercover rainforest. Eden has welcomed more than 22 million visitors since opening and has generated more than £2bn for the regional economy.

David Harland, Chief Executive of Eden Project International, said: “We are really excited to be working in Dundee. It is a vibrant city with big ambitions and we hope to be able to create something that encapsulates its unique appeal. The opening of the city’s V&A in 2018 was a bold statement of intent and we want to be part of the next wave, helping establish Dundee as a truly world-class destination.

“The city was traditionally known for its ‘jute, jam and journalism’, to which we would hope to add some joy, jubilation and, if not an actual jungle, at least the spirit that enabled us to build one under cover in an abandoned quarry in Cornwall.”

DACC CEO Alison Henderson said "This is really exciting and a huge opportunity for the whole area. The V&A has begun our transformation but we need more of these really big projects to capture the attention of investors and visitors. 

At a time when climate change is on everyone's minds I was particularly struck by the links to eco tourism because this is a key theme for not only 2020 but the future, as we adapt to staycations and changing demands from customers.

It is very important that key projects like this are rooted in the local community and I am impressed that 80% of supplies to Eden in Cornwall are sourced locally. We look forward to connecting local businesses & suppliers into the project and supporting engagement, job creation and apprenticeships."

John Alexander, Dundee City Council leader, said: “We are delighted to be working with Eden Project International and our local and national partners on such an exciting collaboration.

“There’s a clear alignment between what Eden is known for – sustainability, education and a first-class visitor experience – and what we want to deliver here in Dundee.

“Bringing Eden Project Scotland to Dundee would not only mean securing an amazing asset for local people to enjoy, but also adding another world-class attraction to our future visitor offer.

“Tourism was a key pillar of the Dundee economy before the devastating events of the past few months, and it will be again.

“The vision, ambition and determination embodied in projects like such as Eden - and V&A Dundee before it - will be critical to creating jobs and prosperity as we as a city recover and rebuild.”

Professor David Maguire, Interim Principal & Vice-Chancellor of the University of Dundee, said, “Working with the Eden Project offers some exciting possibilities for the city and the University.

“We are looking forward to exploring the benefits this could bring to our research, teaching and community engagement. Having the Eden Project mentioned alongside V&A Dundee could further boost the city’s standing far and wide, and add to our attractiveness as a destination.”



University of Dundee

Nobel Prize winning poet and honorary graduate Seamus Heaney has described the University of Dundee as ‘having its head in the clouds and its feet firmly on the ground.’ The ability to be both aspirational and down-to earth and to blend ground-breaking intellectual achievement with practical applications, has given the University its distinctive character.

Dundee City Council

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%.

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