Market traders have insisted they are “going nowhere” despite proposals to knock down a shopping centre in Aberdeen.
Patrizia, which owns Aberdeen Market, submitted plans earlier this year to redevelop the site with shops, cafes and offices. This would involve demolishing the current building on the site.
The Evening Express earlier revealed how the traders in the market had signed a joint letter of objection amid fears they would lose their livelihoods.
Now, after meeting with the site’s leaseholder Market Village, they are confident they will be able to remain – even if planning permission is granted. The firm has nine years left on its lease.
A spokesman for the traders said: “We are greatly encouraged by Market Village’s robust response in defending their lease for the Aberdeen Market property, which has over nine years to run.
“Regardless of what planning permission is ever agreed, nothing can be done without the agreement of the market due to the legally binding lease in place.
“That is very reassuring for the traders and, in short, we’re going nowhere. It’s great that the traders and Market Village are singing from the same hymn sheet.
“Market Village have been very positive regarding the way forward and we look forward to continuing to grow our businesses with their welcome support.”
Keep up to date with the latest news with The Evening Express newsletter
However, Patrizia hit back, accusing Market Village of failing to invest in the complex.
A spokeswoman said: “Our application is proceeding through the planning process.
“There are significant gaps within the existing market and, despite discussions with the Market Village company, they have failed to significantly invest in the ongoing operation.
“There are a few long-term tenants occupying space in the unit, however, the majority have only been able to secure short-term lets.
“A small amount of commercial space is proposed within the new proposed development, although not to the extent that currently exists.
“The space to be created will be marketed if planning permission is approved and local traders will have the opportunity to occupy this new space.
“Patrizia is currently exploring potential solutions for the traders with Aberdeen City Council and has looked at the opportunity the Green presents for a more permanent outdoor market and city and community event space.”
A spokesman for Aberdeen City Council said: “All sides will be considered by the planning development management committee when the application is discussed later this year.”