Calendar An icon of a desk calendar. Cancel An icon of a circle with a diagonal line across. Caret An icon of a block arrow pointing to the right. Email An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of the Facebook "f" mark. Google An icon of the Google "G" mark. Linked In An icon of the Linked In "in" mark. Logout An icon representing logout. Profile An icon that resembles human head and shoulders. Telephone An icon of a traditional telephone receiver. Tick An icon of a tick mark. Is Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes. Is Not Public An icon of a human eye and eyelashes with a diagonal line through it. Pause Icon A two-lined pause icon for stopping interactions. Quote Mark A opening quote mark. Quote Mark A closing quote mark. Arrow An icon of an arrow. Folder An icon of a paper folder. Breaking An icon of an exclamation mark on a circular background. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Caret An icon of a caret arrow. Clock An icon of a clock face. Close An icon of the an X shape. Close Icon An icon used to represent where to interact to collapse or dismiss a component Comment An icon of a speech bubble. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Comments An icon of a speech bubble, denoting user comments. Ellipsis An icon of 3 horizontal dots. Envelope An icon of a paper envelope. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Camera An icon of a digital camera. Home An icon of a house. Instagram An icon of the Instagram logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. Magnifying Glass An icon of a magnifying glass. Search Icon A magnifying glass icon that is used to represent the function of searching. Menu An icon of 3 horizontal lines. Hamburger Menu Icon An icon used to represent a collapsed menu. Next An icon of an arrow pointing to the right. Notice An explanation mark centred inside a circle. Previous An icon of an arrow pointing to the left. Rating An icon of a star. Tag An icon of a tag. Twitter An icon of the Twitter logo. Video Camera An icon of a video camera shape. Speech Bubble Icon A icon displaying a speech bubble WhatsApp An icon of the WhatsApp logo. Information An icon of an information logo. Plus A mathematical 'plus' symbol. Duration An icon indicating Time. Success Tick An icon of a green tick. Success Tick Timeout An icon of a greyed out success tick. Loading Spinner An icon of a loading spinner. Facebook Messenger An icon of the facebook messenger app logo. Facebook An icon of a facebook f logo. Facebook Messenger An icon of the Twitter app logo. LinkedIn An icon of the LinkedIn logo. WhatsApp Messenger An icon of the Whatsapp messenger app logo. Email An icon of an mail envelope. Copy link A decentered black square over a white square.

New plans for ‘safe swim zone’ and Aberdeen beach boardwalk revealed

Designers have lifted the lid on how they plan to make the Esplanade a "unique and attracting destination" for visitors.

Design image of the proposed pier at Aberdeen beach.
The pier with views over the North Sea is one of six projects that will be put to councillors next week. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

A new pier overlooking the vast North Sea could become one of the crown jewels of a rejuvenated Aberdeen waterfront.

And a “safer swimming zone” could be created right underneath, with “artificial reefs” forming a shielded area for anyone venturing in for a dip.

These are just some of the ideas that will be put to city chiefs on Wednesday as work on the multi-million revamp of the beachfront ramps up.

Council planners have now lifted the lid on how they envision the Esplanade, amid hopes of putting Aberdeen back on the map as “the most beautiful resort in Britain”.

This image shows the entire site that will be redeveloped under the masterplan. Image: Kenny Elrick/DC Thomson.

It comes after the first phase of the project – which includes a futuristic playpark, events space and an amphitheater at the beach – was given the green light in December.

The whole scheme, with a potential new Dons stadium, is expected to take decades to complete, and could cost a whopping £441 million.

And as initial work gradually progresses, council officers have unveiled what also might be in store for the city’s promenade…

A map of the six proposed projects. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

New boardwalk to act as ‘unique central point’ at Aberdeen beach

The proposed boardwalk is hoped to become a “focal point” for visitors at the revamped waterfront, enhancing walkers’ experience at the beach with views across the sea.

Fresh images show the structure could be either oval or triangular, depending which option gets driven forward.

Either would stretch all the way from the Beach Boulevard to the proposed new entrance of the Beach Ballroom.

It is hoped the rejuvenated waterfront will attract more visitors. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

It will form a “pedestrian-friendly” route around the rejuvenated waterfront, extending “gracefully” into the North Sea.

This will come with a range of upgrades to the existing footways at the promenade, aimed to make the area accessible to all.

‘Safe swim zone’ for beach regulars

Meanwhile, new groynes and “fish tails” will be erected in the sea to form an area for open water swimming below the pier.

It is described as an “innovative” piece of engineering.

These new features will offer beach regulars a spot to enjoy without facing drifts or waves.

Aberdeen beach masterplan design of the proposed pier.
There is one of the proposed designs for the pier, with the safe swimming zone underneath. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

New “artificial reefs” will also be introduced to increase bio-diversity.

What about changing rooms and public toilets at the beach?

Improving the range of facilities at the beach is at the forefront of council planners’ proposals.

A number of huts with public toilets, changing rooms and showers will be created at key points across the Esplanade to give people a more pleasant experience.

Visitors would also be able to leave their belongings there when going for a swim.

Architect drawings of the proposed huts and beach village. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

The huts will be erected in clusters of seven, and also serve as observation decks for lifeguards, keeping an eye on those in the water.

These will complement a “beach village”, which would serve as a central hub for various activities with hook point for trailers and additional parking.

Documents say this will be a “dynamic space for events”, drawing more tourists to the waterfront.

Could watersport groups’ dream for a clubhouse come true?

And for all the watersport groups in Aberdeen, a new community campus has also been drafted in the proposals.

Swimming and surfing groups have been pushing for such a facility to be created, saying this would secure their future and attract more beach-goers.

They had previously suggested converting the existing public toilets near Fittie as an option.

Th watersport clubhouse will also provide space for safety lessons. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

But city planners seem keen to build a whole new hub for them.

Blueprints show the new facility – dubbed the Footdee Community Clubhouse – could be built near Fittie where the water is safest.

It will provide a “thriving community space” for all watersport groups, and include a cafe or other food and drink vendors, potentially run by local businesses.

There could also be a room for water safety lessons.

Adam Rofe talks through some safety procedures and surfing techniques.
Surf club captain Adam Rofe talking people through some safety procedures and surfing techniques. Image: Kath Flannery/DC Thomson

How much will all of this cost?

As of now, there is no price tag on any of the projects, which come under an over-arching £150m plan for beach and city centre upgrades.

However, it has been estimated that just sorting the initial paperwork – if councillors give it the go ahead – would cost about £7m.

Council planners have also noted several ways they could make profit from the upgrades.

These include leasing some of the huts, offering camper spaces and hosting beach and water events.

Aberdeen beach masterplan design image.
What Aberdeen beach could look like in the future as part of masterplan. Image: Aberdeen City Council.

When can we see change at Aberdeen beach?

And even if the plans are approved, it would still be a while until the projects begin to take shape.

The beach village, public facilities and watersport clubhouse are expected to take about three years, with an opening date provisionally set for May 2027.

All of the footways and steps at the promenade will also be completed within this timescale.

Meanwhile, the bigger developments – the pier and the safer swimming zone – have been planned to welcome visitors by the end of 2029.

The proposals will be discussed in a crunch council meeting on Wednesday.

Exclusive: Council refuses to sell land for £20m Aberdeen beach holiday park – but developer won’t let dream die