£2.2m plan for tram-plagued city centre

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A £2.2 MILLION campaign is being planned to “relaunch” Edinburgh city centre when the tram system is operational.

It is hoped the biggest-ever promotional drive for the city will revive the fortunes of retailers who will have suffered six years of delays and disruption when the scheme starts by the autumn of 2014.

The city council will be asked to pay almost half the cost of the campaign, which will include parking discounts, public transport offers, one-off events and all-day packages.

Business leaders are behind the plans for the marketing drive, which aims to bring back shoppers who have snubbed the capital in favour of out-of-town shopping centres.

The city centre has been besieged by tram works since spring 2008 and major disruption is expected until at least the end of next year.

Essential Edinburgh has launched a consultation on its plans to breathe life back into the city centre and hopes the campaign will coincide with the unveiling of major revamps for both Rose Street and George Street

Lesley Hinds, the city’s transport leader, added: “Discussions are ongoing with Marketing Edinburgh and Essential Edinburgh on how Edinburgh might capitalise on the tram in the future and on how we might further promote the city.”