Construction of V&A Dundee

16 January 2015

Significant economic benefits of an £80.11 million project to construct the V&A Museum of Design Dundee will be discussed by Dundee City Council’s policy and resources committee on Monday January 26.

Work could start in March this year, with the main building completed by the end of 2017 and opened to the public before June 2018. A report outlining a fixed price tender and a proposed funding arrangement details how the construction of the V&A Museum of Design Dundee will create hundreds of jobs and inject millions of pounds into the economy.

The museum will be located at the heart of Dundee’s wider £1 billion Waterfront regeneration project, where an estimated 4,800 FTE jobs will be created as a result of the development of the Central Waterfront area.

Councillor Ken Guild, Dundee City Council leader of the administration and convener of policy and resources, said: “This is a crucial development in the aspirational project to provide Dundee and Scotland with a world-class museum which will help to provide jobs and wider economic benefits.

“Building the V&A Museum of Design Dundee will help attract further investment into Dundee and we expect to see new hotels, retail housing, office and commercial developments coming to the city. We are already experiencing unprecedented levels of investor interest in Dundee and the city’s ongoing and ambitious regeneration will reach another level when the construction phase begins.

“The council and its partners believe that the time is right to press ahead and deliver for Dundee. We have seen the results of similar projects across Scotland and the world and I want to see those benefits come to our city.”

“This major investment in the V&A Museum of Design will have real worth for the future of our city. I am confident that we can deliver this project for a unique building to the new timescales and budget, and we will be able to do this without causing any impact on other important council services.”

Building works for the museum will generate 519 net job years in the construction sector, including opportunities for apprentices. Significant economic benefits include 51 FTE direct jobs and 361 FTE indirect jobs, with this rising to 628 FTE jobs in the initial years after the museum is opened.

An estimated £11.6 million economic boost a year would be made by the V&A Museum of Design Dundee, which is expected to generate in excess of 270,000 visitor engagements a year from year three onwards.

The city’s association with the V&A has already had a positive impact in attracting investment like the Malmaison Hotel and also the proposed Sleeperz Hotel in the new rail station project, while new hotel developments will also create an additional 500 rooms

Investor interest in Dundee is at an all time high, with real prospects of new development taking place on the back of the start of museum construction work. Councillors will be told that a report on the first of these developer interests will be brought forward soon.

Following the tendering process with preferred main contractor BAM Construction, the committee is being asked to authorise the finalisation of a funding strategy to enable construction to proceed.

Further private fundraising is anticipated to secure an additional £6.6million while a further £4.5million is being sought from the Heritage Lottery Fund.

Meanwhile, the city council is in detailed discussions with the Scottish Government regarding a request for funding totalling £22.61 million through the creation of a Growth Accelerator Model (GAM) Fund for the Dundee Waterfront Project and further capital funding. The remaining £6.5m can be accommodated within the city council’s capital programme for 2015-18 without impacting on council services.

Councillor Guild added: “Our city’s profile is already benefiting from our association with the V&A and the breathtaking vision of Kengo Kuma’s building. This can be seen with the award of UNESCO City of Design status which reflects our growing international reputation. A strong partnership exists through Design Dundee Ltd which is dedicated to taking this project to the next stage. There is a shared determination that the V&A Museum of Design Dundee will take shape by the River Tay from this spring.”

Phil Long, director, V&A Museum of Design Dundee, said: “Dundee City Council’s leadership in driving forward the development of V&A Dundee is very welcome indeed, as is the continuing support of Scottish Government and other partners to bring this world-class institution into being.

“Dundee and many from across Scotland are looking forward to having the first ever purpose-built design museum in the UK outside London. People are already benefitting from the prospect of V&A Dundee, getting involved in our pre-opening activities and exhibitions, or experiencing the increased confidence it is helping develop in the city. Dundee deserves this important and transformational investment.“