Waterfront regeneration adds billions to the Scottish Economy

02 Nov 2011

The regeneration of city waterfronts in Glasgow, Edinburgh and Dundee could generate over £3 billion investment in the Scottish economy over the next 5-10 years.

The full economic potential of waterfront redevelopment was confirmed today (Wednesday November 2nd 2011) at the opening of the Waterfront Expo international conference in Glasgow.

Around 150 delegates from across the UK and overseas are attending the two day conference, where they will hear first hand experience of the Edinburgh, Dundee and Clyde Waterfront regeneration projects as well as the lessons learned from and future opportunities for the regeneration of waterfronts in Barcelona, Marseille, Chicago and Yokohama.

Officially supported by Clyde Waterfront, Dundee Waterfront, the City of Edinburgh Council and Glasgow City Council, the WaterfrontExpo 2011 Scotland conference & exhibition is being held at the Crowne Plaza Hotel, SECC Glasgow.

This is the eighth WaterfrontExpo conference and second to be held in Scotland, prompted by the extensive waterfront regeneration in the three Scottish cities since 2006, when it was last held in Glasgow.

The three Scottish city waterfront projects have already attracted over £4 billion private and public sector investment.

Since its launch in 2003, the Clyde Waterfront has attracted private and public investment in excess of £3.5 billion along a 13 mile stretch of the Clyde from Glasgow Green, via Renfrew to Dumbarton Rock. High profile projects include the International Financial Services District, STV and the BBC at Pacific Quay, the SECC Scottish Hydro Arena, Glasgow Harbour, Braehead, Xscape, Ferry Village, Clydebank College, the Titan Crane and the Lomondgate development.  In total, over 350,000 square metres of commercial space has been developed, attracting 20,000 jobs. Building on its success to date, a further £2 billion of mainly private sector investment is projected in the next 5-10 years, across a mix of office, residential, retail and leisure developments.

Edinburgh Waterfront is a £1 billion regeneration project covering 300 hectares along the shores of the Forth from Leith to Granton. Over the past ten years, significant redevelopment includes 2,300 new homes, the new Telford College campus, the Scottish Government offices at Victoria Quay and the Ocean Terminal retail and leisure complex. Planned projects include a public esplanade along the water frontage at Ocean Terminal and the development of Leith Docks as a large scale manufacturing location for the renewables sector.

The Dundee Waterfront project is transforming 240 hectares along a 8km stretch of the River Tay. One third of the targeted £1 billion investment has already been committed. Key projects include the £45 million V&A at Dundee, due to open in 2015, the Central Waterfront which aims to reconnect the city centre with the waterfront and the Seabraes zone which aims to attract further investment from the digital media and creative industries.

Councillor Gordon Matheson, Leader of Glasgow City Council:  "Glasgow's relationship with the Clyde has always been of crucial importance to the city's development and regeneration, and the past decade has seen tremendous success on the banks of the river through projects such as Glasgow Harbour, the Riverside Museum, the International Financial Services District, the Scottish Hydro Arena and Creative Clyde at Pacific Quay.  These examples of vibrant new life along the Clyde have brought thousands of jobs and billions of pounds of investment to Glasgow, and point to a healthy economic future for the city.  I am sure Waterfront Expo will highlight the tremendous opportunities for business development that locating on the Clyde offers."

Councillor Jenny Dawe, Leader, City of Edinburgh Council said: "Development of the Edinburgh Waterfront is one of the key priorities for the city and we are keen to work with partners to ensure its success. I am looking forward to the Expo and the presentations from, and discussions with, the cities and organisations attending."

Mike Galloway, Director of City Development, Dundee City Council said: "Dundee Waterfront is attracting a growing amount of interest, enquiries and, crucially, hard investment from a wide variety of quarters.   We are well advanced with our plans and investment to completely re-engineer and transform the city.   Dundee Waterfront is well and truly open for business and there are exciting opportunities for businesses, investors, developers and entrepreneurs at all levels."

Derek McCrindle, Director, Scottish Enterprise, said: "The regeneration of these three waterfronts has the potential to generate significant economic activity and associated jobs.  Much progress has been made already and despite the challenging economic climate, we believe there is real potential to build on the success to date and deliver world class projects that Scotland can be proud of.  Sharing experiences with international colleagues through events such as Waterfront Expo can only help that process."

The two day event incorporates international case studies, site visits, project workshops, Clyde and Forth river cruises and exhibitor displays. The official civic reception will be staged in the new Riverside Museum (housing Glasgow's transport collection)  designed by world famous architect Zaha Hadid which has already attracted more than 800,000 visitors since opening on 21 June.

For more information visit www.waterfrontexpo.com

  • Waterfront Expo 2011 took place in Glasgow at the Crowne Plaza
  • Glasgow City Council leader Cllr Gordon Matheson speaks at Waterfront Expo
  • Delegates enjoyed a boat trip on the River Clyde on the first day of the conference

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On Clydewaterfront.com