Further details on how Scotland’s hard pressed high streets will benefit from the Town Centre Regeneration Fund were released yesterday [2 April]. The new information on the operation of the 60 million pound scheme was issued by the Scottish Government and COSLA today.
Dundee West MSP Joe FitzPatrick has welcomed the new details which reveal that the fund is now open to any area identified in local authority development plans as a town centre.
Joe FitzPatrick said: “The fund will complement efforts already underway to support town and city centres across Scotland which are feeling the effects of the economic downturn and I would encourage the community in Lochee to consider an application to the fund.
“A wide range of bodies including local authorities, Community Planning Partnerships, Business Improvement Districts, Town Centre Managers, local Chambers of Commerce, businesses and third sector groups are eligible to apply.
“It would be great if an application could be mounted on behalf of Lochee High Street and I will be contacting Dundee City Council to see if that suggestion could be taken further through the Community Planning process or other interested bodies.”
Announcing the new details of the fund today, the Scottish Government Minister for Housing and Communities, Alex Neil, said: “These are hard times for businesses and families across Scotland and this government is working hard to meet this challenge, refocus activity and ensure Scotland gets through the economic downturn in the strongest possible position.
“Investing money in our town centres is a crucial part of this effort and we are clear that we want to see the whole of Scotland feel the benefit of this fund.
“We are looking for strong bids from all areas and all size of towns with a clear emphasis on partnership working, economic, social and environmental benefit. I would encourage any organisation who think they can meet this criteria to apply to the fund.”
Alison Hay, COSLA’s Spokesperson for Regeneration and Sustainable
“I welcome the joint initiative to invest in town centres and breathe life into them. I look forward to the re-invigorated towns we will achieve by working with our community planning partners and other successful applicants.
“Whether it is dealing with contaminated land, renovating stone work or creating innovative community facilities, for those at the sharp end of the downturn it is extremely important that we see the benefits of spend this year.”