As we navigate through the next chapter in the story of Aberdeen Inspired, the opportunity to reflect on the achievements of the past five years is as welcome as the chance to look forward to what the future may hold.
The Aberdeen Reinspired Business Plan both summarises the first five years of the city’s BID from 2011 to 2016, along with outlining the vision for the period 2016 to 2021, using the BID levy as well as additional monies levered by Aberdeen Inspired from a range of external sources.
Aberdeen Inspired was born with the remit of representing the interests of its levy payers and we have made it our mission to listen to those businesses – to find solutions and identify opportunities. Now more than ever, as the north-east economy is tested by the downturn in the oil and gas sector, we need to be focused on ensuring a vibrant and prosperous future.
Aberdeen Inspired’s Priorities
The Business Plan contains four distinct themes; Safe and Welcoming City Centre, Promoting Our City Centre, Attractive City Centre and Helping Your Business. Although distinct, each priority plays its part in a combined effort to collectively boost footfall to the area, along with an increase in customer spend and dwell time. Events such as the Nuart Festival and the Aberdeen Comedy Festival are visible high-profile manifestations of this work, however, like an iceberg there is much that takes place below the waterline that is equally important. Aberdeen Inspired, for example, also part fund regular deep cleans of Union Street and are behind much of the floral hanging basket programme that is rolled out each year.
Lobbying on behalf of businesses has become more relevant in recent years, particularly so with the downturn in the local economy and the evolution of the high street across the country. Aberdeen Inspired feed into the Aberdeen City Centre Masterplan programme on behalf of their businesses as well as the wider planning process where a development out with the City Centre may have an adverse effect on the businesses within the BID.
Aberdeen Inspired work closely with a large range of public, private and third sector stakeholders and enjoy an excellent relationship with Aberdeen City Council who either fund or part-fund the posts of City Centre and Evening and Night Manager, respectively. Since being appointed they have made a tremendous difference for businesses with the rollout of a trade waste contract as well as engaging at national and international level on matters such as the ‘Agent of Change’ legislation that pertains to late night music venues.