Relief as Aberdeen’s Broad Street gets back to business

Aberdeen business owners have spoken of their delight and relief that Broad Street has reopened.

The street, which underwent a £3.2 million part-pedestriansation transformation, had been shut since June last year and suffered months of delays to work.

It reopened yesterday morning to buses, bicycles and pedestrians – with other traffic now banned from the route.

Businesses in the Upperkirkgate area have spoken out about the effect that the closure has had on trade, claiming works detered shoppers from visiting that side of the city centre.

With buses again running down the street, many were optimistic that people would again begin to visit the area.

Andrew Begg, owner of Andrew Begg shoe shop on Upperkirkgate, said: “It will make it feel more open.

“The signs for building works gave off the idea the area was more or less closed for business which wasn’t true.

“When the multiplex cinema gets built in Bon Accord as well I hope it’s going to pull people in to this side of the town.”

Jackie Wilson and Sheila Petrie, co-owners of Upperkrust, said: “It’s fabulous, it looks amazing. We see a lot of tourists and we always direct them to Marischal College, so it’s great that they will actually be able to see it now. It’s been a long time coming and it’s been hard going to deal with. Now it’s finished hopefully it will increase business.”

Heather Lynch, owner of The Cat in the Window cafe, said: “This is the first time that we have not had building works going on since we opened.

“I’m glad it’s finished.

“Hopefully it means a lot more walk-in trade.”

Aberdeen City Council has issued guidance on how to use the area safely, encouraging people to remain mindful of others while using the shared space.

A bus gate camera will be set up for Broad Street from Queen Street to Upperkirkgate.

Council transport spokesman councillor Ross Grant said: “We appreciate this is the first time there will an informal junction in Aberdeen’s city centre and it may take time for people to get used to the new road layout.”