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Tay Cities Deal: Status of 26 projects in year since £700m deal signed

Some of the Tay Cities Deal projects.
Some of the Tay Cities Deal projects.

The Tay Cities Deal ago was signed a year ago with the aim of creating 6,000 quality jobs.

A total of 26 projects were backed by the deal across Dundee, Perth, Angus and Fife.

The UK and Scottish governments together pledged £300 million.

This unlocked a further £400m from business, public sector and educational organisations.

Exactly a year since the deal was signed we review the status of each project.

Tay Cities Deal projects approved

In the first year 10 projects have reached the approval stage.

£30m has been drawn down by the first partners to enter the delivery phase.

Some have entered construction, opened to the public or announced new jobs for the region.

Growing the Tay Cities Biomedical Cluster (Dundee)

Project led by Dundee University approved with £25m of Tay Cities Deal investment in February.

An innovation hub will provide laboratory and office space for life science companies to grow.

Tay Cities Biomedical Cluster.

A medical device research and development facility will also be developed in the School of Medicine.

Projects will move into the facility from late Autumn 2022.

International Barley Hub (Perth & Kinross)

Building work on the £35m project at James Hutton Institute in Invergowrie began in August.

It seeks to secure the long-term future of the barley sector by developing new varieties and growing systems that can cope with climate change. It will also research new uses for the crop.

Advanced Plant Growth Centre (Perth & Kinross)

Another James Hutton Institute project that broke ground in August, worth £27m.

Vertical farms at James Hutton Institute.

It aims to revolutionise crop production systems to produce food locally 365 days a year, including use of vertical farms.

Angus Fund (Angus)

Backed by the UK Government to the value of £26.5m, this is for Angus projects with an emphasis on reducing carbon footprint and innovative, clean technologies.

Angus Council signed a memorandum of understanding with Crown Estate Scotland to develop a clean growth enterprise hub in Montrose.

This will be followed by a commitment with Dalhousie Estates to create a Rural Mobility Hub in Brechin early in 2022.

cyberQuarter (Dundee)

Abertay University began construction work on its £18m cybersecurity research and development hub in September.

It announced 30 jobs linked to the deal as NHS National Services Scotland confirmed they would base cyber operations in Dundee.

Eden Campus (Fife)

The Eden Campus development led by the University of St Andrews at Guardbridge, Fife has also continued to move forward.

More than £70m on the project which aims to bring academia and industry together to help shape a sustainable future.

St Andrews University’s Eden Campus at Guardbridge.
Stretch Dome Simulator (Fife)

Based at Eden Project, the simulator can test research and innovation into climate change, coastal ecology, underwater, acoustics, low carbon and new materials.

Regional Culture & Tourism Investment Programme (Regional)

The programme funds projects that make a significant contribution to the cultural landscape of the region.

In May, the public got a first look at the new look Hospitalfield House gardens, fernery and glasshouse cafe in Arbroath.

Cicely Farrer helps to plant more than 30 different types of fern in the restored 19th Century Fernery at Hospitalfield.

Tay Cities Deal money is contributing towards a £12m upgrade at Discovery Point in Dundee.

Perth Cultural Transformation (Perth & Kinross)

Led by Perth & Kinross Council, work to renovate Perth City Hall beginning in March.

The £26m project will become a new home for the Stone of Destiny.

Perth City Hall.

Rural Angus and Rural Perth and Kinross Highspeed Broadband (Angus and Perth & Kinross)

Two projects to bring high-speed broadband to rural areas were approved in June.

Due to be approved soon

Many more projects are expected to be approved in 2022.

Six projects are classed by the Tay Cities Region Joint Committee as due to be approved soon.

Regional Skills and Employability Development Programme (Regional)

A project, backed by £20m from the Scottish Government, to close opportunity and employment gaps for disadvantaged parts of society.

Tay Cities Engineering Partnership (Regional)

Its mission is to  drive up the skills and technology base of the sector to make it more competitive in an international marketplace.

It also aims to accelerate the pace of research and development.

Projects could be the use of robotics and artificial intelligence, internationalisation and increased productivity.

5G Digital Testbeds (Regional)

The Scottish Government will commit up £2m to support 5G testbeds and trials in the Tay Cities region.

A Scotland 5G Hub is located in Dundee. It was used when Esports Scotland staged its grand finals at Dundee Contemporary Arts centre.

The SEL4 gaming event at Dundee Contemporary Arts.
Low Carbon Transport & Active Travel Hubs (Perth & Kinross)

The low carbon transport hub will be build near Perth on the motorway network.

It will bring solar energy generation and battery storage to provide electric vehicle charging.

Aviation Academy for Scotland (Regional)

A centre of excellence in aviation training.

It will help reskill the aviation industry’s workforce to take advantage of new employment opportunities created by clean technologies and the transition to low carbon aviation.

Dundee Airport (Dundee)

Investment of £9.5m from the Scottish Government to support the development of route opportunities and links with other airports.

Dundee Airport jobs

It will involve modifications to the terminal building and airfield.

Projects coming later in the Tay Cities Deal

The Tay Cities Deal covers a 15-year period. These are the final 10 projects likely to be approved.

Just Tech (Dundee)

An ambitious project to build the world’s first Institute for Innovation in Forensic Science at the University of

The UK Government will put £15m to the project.

Perth Innovation Highway (Perth & Kinross)

The Deal will fund construction costs to open up 10 hectares of land for development at Perth Eco Innovation Park.

This will include a freight and logistics centre to reduce the number of lorries in the city centre.

Pitlochry Festival Theatre (Perth & Kinross)

A £10m investment to support the theatre.

It will include upgrading the auditorium, a smaller-scale flexible performance space and renovation to public spaces.

Pitlochry Festival Theatre is one of the Tay Cities Deal projects.
Studio Dundee (Dundee)

A new business incubation and co-working space for young businesses.

It will encourage collaboration and innovation.

Advanced Manufacturing Programme (Regional)

The Scottish Government will give £8m to support the development of high value advanced manufacturing.

The programme of investment will focus on securing long-term sustainable jobs.

Project Beacon (Perth & Kinross)

The creation of an advanced plastics recycling facility. It will be capable of treating all waste plastic types with at least a 90% recovery and recycling rate.

Innerpeffray Library (Perth & Kinross)

Scotland’s first, free public lending library will see a series of improvements.

These will include improvements to access and parking, a heritage trail and viewing platforms.

Keeper of the Books, Lara Haggerty at Innerpeffray Library.
Crieff International Highland Centre (Perth & Kinross)

The first of its kind, this will be a world base for Highland sports, dance and music.

It will bring all aspects of the traditional Highland Games to one place.

It aims to help to preserve and promote this part of Scotland’s culture and history.

Aero Space Kinross (Perth & Kinross)

The UK Government will give £1.6m towards a uniquely themed Aviation, Astronomy and Space Flight Science Centre.

Perth Bus & Rail Interchange (Perth & Kinross)

£15m of support towards redeveloping Perth’s bus and railway stations.

It aims to improve the commuter and visitor experience in Perth.

Reflections on year of progress

Outgoing chair of the Tay Cities Region Joint Committee, Dundee City Council leader John Alexander, said: “It has been an outstanding first year of progress.

“There’s a real spirit of collaboration.

“I’m delighted we are now seeing so many highly anticipated developments coming to fruition.”

Angus Council leader David Fairweather will assume the chair role.

He said: “The progress to date is highly encouraging.

“It’s excellent to see so many important projects and programmes coming to life across Angus, Dundee, Fife and Perth & Kinross.”