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Retailer Greens blames council after pulling out of £350k Dundee railway station plan

Greens' possible design of the store at Dundee railway station.
Greens' possible design of the store at Dundee railway station.

The convenience store chain that hoped to set up shop at Dundee railway station said it won’t be progressing with its plans today.

Eros Retail Ltd, which trades locally as Greens of Dundee, had pledged to invest around £350,000 and employ more than 30 staff at the railway station store.

The firm hit out at Dundee City Council for a lack of engagement on its plans over the past three years.

A spokesman for the company said: “It is with heartfelt regret that we have reached the conclusion we will no longer be progressing with the retail unit at Dundee Railway Station.

“After initially expressing interest in the site within the Waterfront in May 2017, we have submitted at least three proposals to Dundee City Council as landlords.

“The initial proposal was for a state-of-the-art convenience store to have been open in the site as early as January 2018.

How the store might have looked.

“Since then we have met various deadlines set by the council as well as initiating over 60 communications over the last two-and-a-half years.

“Unfortunately, we simply have not seen the same level of engagement from the Council and are disappointed they have not entertained various requests to meet directly and get the project on track.”

The firm claimed the council would have received around £250,000 in rents and rates by now if the initial concept had been approved.

It said the company’s spend into the city’s economy could have reached more than £1 million if the refit costs, wages and suppliers were added.

The spokesman added: “It is regretful that the council are unable to support a local, independent business with an ambitious vision for both the site and the Waterfront development as a whole.

The planned exterior for the shop

“In stark contrast, the support seen from various councillors has been fully welcomed including at the licensing board meeting last year.

“With much of our team having spent a significant amount of their lives in Dundee, we have always had and will continue to have an extremely close connection with the city.

“However, for the foreseeable future, and with the current policies of the Council, we will have to continue our growth elsewhere and for now, it appears our valued customers will only be able to visit their local Greens in either Fife or Aberdeenshire.”

Based in Markinch, Eros Retail Ltd is run by Amir and Harris Aslam. A third director, Raza Rehman, resigned in July.

Eros Retail has shops in eight locations including two sites in Kirkcaldy, Cardenden, Coaltown of Balgonie, Ellon, Leven, Markinch, and Tillicoultry.

It also operated a shop in Dundee’s Perth Road before Sainsbury’s moved into the premises last year.

A spokesperson for Dundee City Council said: “Councils officers and our agents Ryden are continuing discussions with parties interested in becoming potential occupants of the units at the railway station.”

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