The director of V&A Dundee Philip Long said the design museum will promote “innovation, creativity and entrepreneurship” in the city.
Speaking at The Courier’s Business Briefing yesterday, the V&A Dundee head described the £80 million museum as a “calling card” for the area.
It was announced earlier this week that the opening date for the Kengo Kuma designed museum will be September 15.
Mr Long said he could already see the project attracting economic development in the city.
He said: “The fact the V&A chose Dundee is the most fantastic accolade for this city to have.
“We believe from research that the museum be visited by half a million people in the first year and then 350,000 people a year thereafter.
“People will be coming to the city looking for a great experience, using their discretionary spend and wanting to experience the area around about which can only be of benefit to the city.”
When quizzed by the audience on who would open the museum, Mr Long said a lot of planning was going into how to launch the museum which would involve a “series of events that reflect its significance.”
He added: “What I don’t want to happen is a report I saw about the new Louvre opening in North France which said the museum was wonderful but don’t go for two years until the rest of the city catches up.
“We are a long, long way in advance of that – our city is an exciting, vigorous, energetic place to be.”
Hosted by The Courier’s deputy editor Dave Lord, the briefing at DC Thomson’s Meadowside offices had the theme of Dundee’s Big Year.
The panel also included Professor Gavin Reid, head of Dundee Business School at Abertay University, Mark Bevan, the CEO of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry and Lynne Short, convenor of Dundee City Council’s city development committee.
Mr Reid said he had visited Bilbao in Spain, home of the Guggenheim, and seen first-hand the impact a destination attraction could have in an area.
He said: “The direct jobs from the museum are about 1,000 but the multiplier effect has been massive. The area has seen a 10-fold increase in flights.
“Looking at the V&A Dundee and saying how are you going to transform our economy would be an unfair ask but it’s a symbol of the city’s intention going forward.”
Liz Jackson, the managing director of recruitment firm Fairways, who sponsored the Business Briefing, said it had been a great event.
“We were proud to be sponsors of this event; collaborative and partnership working and entrepreneurial spirit has put Dundee on the global map in its journey from good to great! As reported by Bloomberg “Dundee is top destination in the world.”
Tay Cities Deal could have huge impact
The potential benefits to Tayside and the wider area of the £1.84 billion Tay Cities Deal was highlighted at The Courier’s Business Briefing.
Mark Bevan, the CEO of the Scottish Council for Development and Industry, said the proposal had been well thought out to benefit Tayside and the wider area.
He said: “It is very collaborative and looks beyond the city. I think it has benefited from coming later than some of the other city deals as it is very collaborative.”
The Tay Cities Deal submission document features more than 50 projects, including a scheme to boost employment through oil and gas decommissioning.
Overall the deal could help bring 15,000 jobs to Tayside and north Fife.
Dundee City councillor Lynne Short added: “The plans are costed and focused projects.
“Across the city there are generational problems and you can’t fix that through the politics of five years here, five years there.
“The Tay Cities Deal will be transformational.”