Thousands of people are expected to line the streets of Aberdeen as an elite cycling race arrives in the city tomorrow.
The OVO Energy Tour Series will see the country’s top cyclists take part in a number of races throughout the city centre.
Drivers have been urged to avoid travelling into the area.
A number of road closures and restrictions will be put in place and will include Union Street, which will close from Market Street to Crown Street from 6am tomorrow until 1am on Friday.
The day will begin at noon with races from Scottish Cycling and the Cycling Activity Village before the elite riders take to the circuit at 5.30pm, with the event finishing by 10pm.
Aberdeen City Council co-leader Councillor Jenny Laing said: “The OVO Energy Tour Series is set to be an exciting and busy day in the city centre.
“We appreciate everyone’s support in helping to bring such an exciting event to Aberdeen.
“We would advise everyone travelling to Aberdeen tomorrow to plan your journey in advance, take public transport or cycle (where possible) and delays around the city centre are possible so leave yourself plenty of travel time.”
Police will be on patrol on foot and bicycles throughout the day and will be available to provide help or advice.
Inspector Chris Kerr said: “It’s great to see a big sporting event coming to Aberdeen city.
“We are expecting the city centre to be busy with spectators as well as competitors.
“Last year saw motorists experience significant delays in and around the city centre so I would urge all motorists to avoid driving into the city centre on Thursday if possible.
“Diversions will be in place and public transport will be running as usual, albeit taking slightly different routes.
“If anyone is planning to visit the city tomorrow I would advise leaving plenty of time for your journey and consider where you will park, as all city centre car parks are likely to be very busy.
“We hope everyone attending the tour series event has a safe and enjoyable day.”
Thousands are expected to line the city-centre streets and businesses along the route have been invited to take part in a window-dressing competition on a cycling theme, with the chance to win prizes.
Companies have also been asked to provide offers and promotions to encourage riders and spectators to support local businesses and stay longer in the city on the day.
Russell Borthwick, chief executive of Aberdeen and Grampian Chamber of Commerce, said: “The wide range of existing festivals, attractions and activities which bring colour and vibrancy to the north-east are a vital part of what makes people want to live, work, study and visit here.
“High-profile events such as the tour series and the Great Aberdeen Run play a big part in continuing the city’s transformation into a cool and cultured place.”
Councillor Michael Hutchison, who represents the George Street and harbour ward, added: “I’m always happy to welcome anything that will draw folk into the city centre and showcase what Aberdeen has to offer.
“Hopefully, this will provide a boost for businesses and also, as a cyclist myself, it would be great if this got more folk to take up cycling.”
Aberdeen Inspired chief executive Adrian Watson said: “Aberdeen Inspired welcomes back the tour series to our city centre.
“If last year’s event is anything to go by it will attract thousands and we reiterate that Aberdeen city centre will be very much open for business, with a fantastic retail and hospitality on offer.”
Aberdeen is one of two Scottish venues on this year’s tour, with the cyclists also competing in Motherwell.
The highlights will be shown on ITV4 on Friday.