First step revealed as Kirkcaldy bids to be digital pioneer

Kirkcaldy4All
Kirkcaldy4All

Kirkcaldy is set to take the first step towards becoming a pioneering digital innovation district.

An open meeting has been arranged for next week – and businesses across the town are invited to attend.

A Digital Innovation District (DID) has been proposed as a successor to Kirkcaldy4All which closes in March 2020.

The town centre management business has decided not to go for a third ballot, stating the model was no longer sustainable.

In its place it wants to create a Kirkcaldy-wide DID which would serve almost 1000 businesses.

Kirkcaldy4All is working with Kirkcaldy West Community Council on the project, and the two groups have now organised the first open meeting to explain the concept in more detail

It takes place at the Old Kirk, Kirkcaldy, on Wednesday, October 30 at 5:30 pm.

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The meeting – which will include a Q&A session – will be chaired by Stewart Ness from the community council.

He said: “We have been working with Kirkcaldy4All on a multitude of plans and opportunities structured around a framework for growth and we are hopeful those will come to fruition for the benefit of the town.

“Borne out of those discussions has been a realisation that the traditional BID is no longer a sustainable model for the town and that a bigger, bolder opportunity exists to create a ‘whole town’ solution that will benefit more businesses and multiple community partners.”

Kirkcaldy4All will be the second BID to close in Fife this year – Dunfermline Delivers failed to win a vote when it went to ballot.

The unanimous decision to call time was taken by the current board, been based on “commercial realities” facing not only Kirkcaldy but almost every town centre and High Street across Scotland.

Harry Cormie, board chairman, said: “A great deal has been developed and delivered in ten years.

“We do not want to see any of that go to waste, hence the desire to look at broader opportunities that will be more sustainable for the town.”

He believes the digital proposal can continue the work already done – and represent the whole of the town.

Mr Cormie added: “The Digital Innovation concept has the town’s businesses and community partners at its heart.

“We are working with Kirkcaldy West Community Council and others to try to secure seed corn funding that will allow us to run a 15-month campaign to demonstrate the project.

“That will build to a ballot of businesses in February 2021. No business will be asked to contribute financially during the 15-month project. Only with their majority support in a ballot will the Digital Innovation District come to fruition.”