Scottish Cities Alliance facilitates targeted support for cities and regions.

March 17, 2021

Montage of city views from across Scotland

Working collaboratively the cities are working with the Scottish Government to kick-start the post Covid-19 economic recovery.

The Scottish Cities Alliance is facilitating a City Centre Recovery taskforce, led by the Economy Secretary Fiona Hyslop which aims to provide a boost to city centres in the wake of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Cities and regions can also apply for additional funding to help them recover from the coronavirus pandemic.

Speaking ahead of the first meeting of the City Centre Recovery taskforce tomorrow Economy Secretary Ms Hyslop announced two new funds totalling £4 million.

Chair of the Scottish Cities Alliance and Leader of Dundee City Council, Councillor John Alexander, said:

“We are delighted with this direct support for our city centres and the ongoing commitment to work with cities, which have been hit especially hard because of the pandemic.

“We are pleased the Scottish Government recognises the unique role of city centres and the need for support. This will assist our cities to recover and adapt in the face of the stark changes we face, partly as a result of the pandemic.

“Working collaboratively provides an opportunity to deliver the best outcomes, with support, sharing of knowledge and joining up the wider ecosystem of investment and job creation. That can only be a positive thing and we welcome Fiona Hyslop’s vision for inclusive, sustainable growth.”

Each city local authority has been invited to submit proposals focused on recovery planning to the £2 million City Centres Recovery Fund with a focus on maximising local job creation, as well as accelerating delivery of City Region and Growth Deal investment and developing regional recovery plans.

Proposals received so far include:

  • plans for more city-centre based apprenticeships and training in Edinburgh
  • property repair, improvement and conversion in Perth City Centre
  • repurposing of Dundee City Centre properties through collaboration with Creative Industries sector
  • support for businesses in Glasgow applying for outdoor trading areas as restrictions ease

Meanwhile, a £2 million Regional Recovery Fund is calling for proposals focused on maximising local job creation, as well as accelerating the delivery of City Region and Growth Deal investment and developing regional recovery plans.

Ms Hyslop said:

“There is no denying the severe impact this pandemic has had, and continues to have, on our cities and regions. We recognise the sacrifices everyone has made to support our collective effort to get the virus under control and for that we are incredibly grateful.

“We know the pandemic has had differing impacts across Scotland, and this targeted support allows each local authority to put forward tailored proposals that meet their unique needs and support economic recovery.

“We have already provided £1.2 billion in economic recovery initiatives over the last year and the recently passed Scottish Budget sets out even more recovery measures to support the economy in the next year.

“Our City Centre Recovery taskforce will develop a shared vision for the future of Scotland’s city centres, with a focus on innovative actions to help them prosper over the next five years, in a way that encourages inclusive and sustainable growth.”