Council is to carry feasibility study into Victorian Market improvements
City Leader, Cllr Ian Brown and Council officers have met with Victorian Market traders to discuss the future of the Victorian Market and how it might be improved to maximise it as an asset to the city centre.
The meeting was part of an ongoing engagement with retailers. Retailers were consulted on plans for a feasibility study to identify how to best sustain and improve the economic viability of the market and attract increased footfall.
The Victorian market is at the heart of the City and is a prime asset of the Inverness Common Good Fund, managed by The Highland Council. There are 35 units in the Victorian Market and all income from rent goes back into the Common Good Fund.
The Council is responsible for ensuring that the Victorian Market and its tenants receive the highest standard of service and support, so that the Traders have the best chance for success and the Inverness Common Good Fund receives a reasonable rate of return. The Common Good Fund recently spent £1million on refurbishing the Market Roof and has installed new heaters and windows, without direct cost recovery from the Tenants. Every effort is made to help tenants promote the Market, with sums being allocated for advertising.
The Market lease provides extensive support for the tenants by the way of structural repairs, common services, janitorial help and security. This makes the Victorian Market one of the most attractive and competitive locations in the City Centre for small retail businesses.
City Leader, Cllr Ian Brown said: “The Victorian Market is a central part of the heritage of the city
A recent 5 year rent review for 16 of the units, caused some concern for some of the tenants, although the rents remain comparative for the city centre.
Productive discussions have since been held with the tenant of the Model Shop. The unit was previously three units and it has been agreed that the unit be split again (approximately in half) with a pro rata reduction in rent. The tenant has agreed to enter into a new lease under these terms.