AN AMBITIOUS business plan outlining initiatives to raise Stirling’s profile and create a cleaner, safer and more vibrant environment is being launched by the city’s BID.
The Go Forth Stirling team have drawn up proposals for a second five-year term, starting in September, after consultation with local businesses.
The 2022-2027 plan sets out the BID’s vision for the new term and details the significant achievements and investments the organization has made in Stirling in its first five years.
The document was developed following a business engagement survey which invited traders and city stakeholders to comment on how best to improve Stirling’s environment and attract more of visitors to the city.
It features key proposals such as better street cleaning, free and continuous public Wi-Fi in the city center, the continuation of popular grant programs, new events including an improved winter festival and the introduction of annual business awards.
Danielle McRorie-Smith, Project Director at Go Forth Stirling, said: “We are delighted to present our five-year plan for 2022-27 which has been developed after consultation with the Stirling business community.
“Over the past five years, the BID has made a number of key improvements to the downtown area and we have many more plans to implement over the next few years.”
“Our strategic plan responds to the priorities indicated by business owners and highlights how important it is to get a BID in Stirling for the next five years to support the future of our town.”
“It highlights the difference that the IDB’s financial investment has already made and the new initiatives that our continued funding and innovative ideas will be able to secure.”
“Our vision is to work with the business community to create welcoming new opportunities without compromising Stirling’s heritage.”
“And we will continue to advocate for the needs of our businesses and provide a strong, unified voice to lobby on their behalf.”
The BID is aiming to invest £1.8m in Stirling if the organization wins a second five-year term.
Projections based on the amount of levy payer capital plus additional grant funding the IDB expects to raise indicate a projected income of over £1.8m.
Ms McRorie-Smith added: “Without BID, over £1.4m of BID levy investment that supports inner city businesses will be lost over the next five years. We are also focused on securing additional funding with £300,000 awarded in the last two years alone.
The five-year plan will be officially unveiled by the BID team and board at a launch event in Stirling tomorrow (Wednesday 25 May) with business owners, politicians and local councilors among the guests.
The event will also be an opportunity for the business community to meet BID partners, including representatives from Police Scotland, Stirling Council and Retailers Against Crime Scotland.
The launch of the business plan marks the start of the re-vote process which will see Stirling traders asked to vote ‘Yes’ for another five years of IDB.
It highlights achievements from the first BID term, including the provision of Street Ambassadors, seasonal events such as the Reindeer Trail, the Street Stories project and the launch of the Independent Stirling website with 250 traders.
It describes how Go Forth aims to manage business needs through dedicated support and lobbying; maintaining current projects and services and evolving to introduce and develop new initiatives.
New plans include a calendar of events throughout the year to increase footfall in and around Stirling, improved destination marketing ideas and investment in better street cleaning, including an annual deep clean of the BID area.
Other priority topics to be addressed include parking issues, improving wayfinding and signage in the city, and addressing the number of vacant properties.
The plan also illustrates how grants totaling more than £130,000 have helped 84 town center businesses deal with flooding issues, storefront and digital improvements and start-up supply.
Ballots will be issued to business owners who are eligible to vote in the renewal ballot this week and the ballot closes on Thursday, July 7.
For full details of Go Forth Stirling’s bid for a second term, visit www.goforthstirling.co.uk/bid-ballot-2022