The front of Aberdeen’s former BHS store will soon be covered up amid complaints the building sticks out “like a rotten tooth” on Union Street.
Council chiefs are considering how best to shield the eyesore from view when construction on the new Aberdeen Market begins.
The frontage was stripped down last May, leaving the grimy skeleton of the building exposed.
It marked the beginning of the longed-for “renaissance” of the struggling city centre, with the site earmarked to become an indoor market with 10 food and drink outlets.
And under the blueprints, the remains of the BHS facade will ultimately be demolished and replaced with glass panels and digital displays.
But questions have been raised about what happens until this vision comes to life.
‘BHS store is a Union Street eyesore’
The £50 million scheme has now been rubber stamped.
And while councillors backed the polished designs for the new market, some raised concerns about the downtrodden look of the former BHS store front.
Labour’s Sandra MacDonald even went on to say that it looks like a “rotten tooth” on Union Street.
It comes after council chiefs rolled out a pilot project to bring unloved buildings between Market Street and Bridge Street up to scratch.
And Mrs MacDonald stressed this should also apply for the BHS store.
She added: “The BHS building does look a bit like a rotten tooth on Union Street.
“This needs to be looked at so we have a site which is more amenable to the eye while work is under way.
“Because – quite frankly – this is not a good look at the moment.”
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What can be done to fix BHS front?
A spokeswoman for Aberdeen City Council said they have already put some thought into that and the building will be “wrapped up” soon.
How exactly, however, is still unknown.
Some suggestions from planning officers include displaying some of the new Aberdeen Market designs or splashing the local authority’s branding on the hoardings.
Our Union Street chief Bob Keiller, who has been leading volunteer efforts to spruce up the Granite Mile, has also chipped in with a few ideas.
He welcomed the council’s decision, adding: “We support the city council with any efforts they can make to improve the look of any part of the city centre.”
Construction works on the new Aberdeen Market are poised to be begin in the next few months, with an opening date planned in about two years.
Operator McGinty’s Group hopes that once completed, it will be a “really cool space” for events, with an array of independent shops, bars, restaurants and cafes.