Funding The River Navigation
The total build cost of the Derby Arm, the visitor centre with the land they sit upon and river locks is estimated at £18m.
The creation of the Derby Arm complex and River Link is by far the largest and therefore most costly part of our overall project. However it is also the element with the greatest opportunity to generate substantial tourist income. We have reviewed the income generation of other similar “attractions” and it is clear that Derby should be able to match the success of the Falkirk Wheel and Kelpies complex in Scotland, which attracts 650,000 visitors per annum.
The Trust’s approach is therefore to develop a business plan and commercial rationale proving that the income generation from visitor traffic generates a sufficient economic return to justify the initial cost of investment. Funding for this business plan has been obtained and the study by Atkins is underway. The development costs may also be reduced by grants or loans as this project will generate large increases in employment. The Trust is therefore currently working with Atkins, along with other marketing and engineering experts to build this case. Once the case is made the Trust plans to work with an established developer to undertake the construction and funding of the work to agreed common standards.
We have recently approached Derby Bondholders to promote the development of the River Derwent and building of the Derby Arm; below is a video we presented to them, which was very well received.