Campaigners desperate to revive Aberdeen’s Union Street fear its resurgence is being held back by a lack of taxis to take people there.
Queues are often seen snaking along city centre streets as impatient punters await a lift home at the end of an evening out.
And the Our Union Street taskforce is concerned the long-running problem is putting people off even venturing into Aberdeen.
In a newly published document, they say the predicament is “having a negative impact on the local economy”.
Why might Uber be needed in Aberdeen?
The taskforce contends that once-controversial proposals to bring Uber to Aberdeen need to be considered again.
A new white paper addressing the state of the Granite Mile explains that Our Union Street leaders have spoken to local taxi operators in a bid to understand the problem.
The dossier states: “There appears to be a serious under-supply of taxis that seems to have a negative impact on the local economy – especially the night-time economy.”
And the group is concerned that people, perhaps at the end of a night out, are more likely to engage in antisocial behaviour if they “can’t get away from the city centre”.
Our Union Street says “creates a very negative experience for visitors and damages our reputation”.
Campaigners will ‘explore’ idea of an Aberdeen Uber service
With all this in mind, is it time for drastic action?
The volunteer-led city centre crusaders say there will be “no simple actions”, but “further discussion is needed”.
And that discussion, they argue, must involve app-based operator Uber.
Our Union Street wants to “understand” whether an Uber service in Aberdeen would “solve the problem”.
The white paper continues: “All Uber drivers need to be licensed, and we don’t have enough licensed taxi drivers in the city.
“It might be part of the mix in the future.”
Would you like to see Uber come to Aberdeen? Let us know in our comments section below
Why does Aberdeen not have Uber already?
Uber was granted a licence to operate in Aberdeen in 2017, but the outfit never made it to the city.
Two years later, amid speculation the downturn made it a less attractive proposition, the company confirmed it wouldn’t be driving the plans forward.
What other problems are affecting Aberdeen’s taxi industry?
Meanwhile, another issue Our Union Street wants to tackle is the “local knowledge test” that Granite City taxi drivers have to take.
They say it’s “very demanding”, with a “low pass rate” prohibiting much-needed cabbies from stepping foot into the trade.
As Our Union Street ramps up its efforts in the weeks and months ahead, bosses have lifted the lid on their five “action areas”.
And one of the main themes they will now explore in the background is: “The impact of more or fewer taxis on our economy and what options are available. ”
- Are parking problems an issue in Aberdeen city centre, or is this just a “misconception”?
- And read more about the action plan to fill the city centre’s empty shops here