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Procurement plans for City Centre Masterplan approved

14/02/14

Plans to procure a masterplan and delivery programme for Aberdeen city centre have been unanimously approved by councillors.

Aberdeen City Council agreed to underwrite the cost of the City Centre Masterplan and Delivery Programme – for which external funding, including from the private sector, will be sought - up to the value of 750,000.

A procurement brief, drawn up to set of a clear vision, strategy and action programme for the city centre, addresses issues raised in the Robert Gordon University paper Regenerating Aberdeen: A Vision for a Thriving and Vibrant City Centre.

The masterplan and delivery programme, which will guide future development and investment, will take existing projects, including Marischal Square, the Art Gallery extension and a variety of other committed projects, into account and seek to integrate them into a high-quality urban environment. It will also address what is missing from a successful city centre.

The council's Urgent Business Committee unanimously approved recommendations to appoint a multi-disciplinary team, demonstrating a design-led approach with a detailed understanding of access and movement, infrastructure, market demand, and delivery to work with the council and partners to produce the masterplan and a robust, co-ordinated delivery programme for the city centre.

It is expected that the masterplan and delivery programme will take a minimum of nine months to prepare. Bidders will be asked to submit proposals for completing the masterplan and delivery programme in six, nine or 12 months. It is anticipated that feedback on the feasibility of those timescales will be received during an industry day which is to take place next month.

City Centre Regeneration Board chair, deputy council leader Marie Boulton said:
"I am delighted that the committee unanimously agreed to get this essential process underway as quickly as possible. The procurement of a masterplan and delivery programme for the city centre, which will clearly identify what the city centre needs and how we can achieve it, is an absolutely crucial piece of work for the regeneration of the city centre.

"By gaining approval at the Urgent Business Committee, we have saved three weeks of delay in getting this work underway."

An evaluation team, which will include two members of the City Centre Regeneration Board, will be established to assess submissions made by bidders for the masterplan and delivery programme contract.

A project team, comprising council officers and representatives of city centre services and stakeholders, will develop the detailed scope of work to be included in the invitation to tender for the masterplan and delivery programme contract.