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Aberdeen Inspired has welcomed a five-point action plan set out by Our Union Street to revive the Granite Mile.

The community campaign – led by entrepreneur Bob Keiller – has distilled 10,000 ideas from the public and local groups and organisations on the future of the street down to 17 themes and now created five action areas to map a future for Union Street.

Our Union Street is seeking to:

Brighten the street: This is about getting the street clean then bringing extra colour and interest to it.

Fill the units: Create and market a compelling offer then attract great businesses to occupy them and bring them back to life.

Use the space: Use the empty shop windows as a fascinating and often changing street gallery that attracts people to the street and brightens up empty retail units.

Tell the story: Creating a single reliable source of information about what’s happening in the city centre and creating lots of attractions and events.

Engage the people: Recruiting and deploying the volunteers required to deliver the four action areas above.

Our Union Street is a community-led, not-for-profit organisation which is seeking to restore pride and prosperity to Union Street, which sits at the heart of Aberdeen City Centre.

It was set up by Aberdeen Inspired, Aberdeen & Grampian Chamber of Commerce, Aberdeen City Council and Opportunity North East, with additional support from Shell.

AB15 Limited – owned and run by Mr Keiller and his business partner Derrick Thomson – is also funding the organisation, and both businessmen have committed to running the organisation free of charge.

Adrian 4 credit Kenny Elrick

Pictured - Adrian Watson, Chief Executive of Aberdeen Inspired

Adrian Watson, Chief Executive of Aberdeen Inspired, said the city’s Business Improvement District was delighted to give Our Union Street its support.

He said: “These five action areas are setting out a roadmap to a better future for the most important thoroughfare in our city, Union Street.

“Even better is that this campaign is driven by the community, for the community and it is good to see so many people volunteering, willing to make change for the better –even going so far as rolling up their sleeves and cleaning the streets themselves.

Ous square

“Bob Keiller and his team are spearheading exciting and vital change that will, I am sure, transform the fortunes of Union Street and once again make it the crowning glory of the Granite City.“

“Key to the success of this is that everyone in Aberdeen gets behind and supports the work of Our Union Street. If we get Union Street right, then the whole of the city centre will benefit.”

Our Union Street’s efforts to clean the street will commence later this month, starting with the St Nicholas Kirkyard on October 28th, and members of the public are being urged to register via the Our Union Street website to take part.

The group has also helped pull together what will be one of the most generous packages of incentives available anywhere in the UK for incoming businesses.

Mr Keiller said: “We are building an army of volunteers and skilled tradespeople who are willing to give their time to clean up the street, and very soon you will see them deployed around the city centre in distinctive purple vests.

“We have also launched one of the best incentive packages available anywhere in the UK, meaning that new occupiers taking on long-term vacant units will benefit from up to two years rent and business rate free under a support package drawn up and partly funded by Our Union Street.

“We know the leads won’t come to us, and that we need to go find them ourselves - so next month we will be commissioning a new website and digital marketing effort which will, literally, sell Aberdeen and Union Street to business owners locally and all over the UK.

“We have a compelling story to tell, as tens of millions of pounds is invested to improve our city centre and reshape it for generations to come.”

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