No-one wants to pay for a flyover at Laurencekirk, according to MSP Nigel Don, who has claimed that developers will not meet the cost.
Mr Don has also said that roads agency Transport Scotland is ‘‘wrong’’ to think housebuilders will fund a new, safe crossing of the A90 at the south end of Laurencekirk. He told the Observer this week: “Everyone seems to agree a flyover is necessary - but nobody wants to pay for it.
‘‘Aberdeenshire Council rightly point out this is a trunk road and not their responsibility.
‘‘Transport Scotland say housing developers should pay for it but, given the current state of the market and the sites available at the south end of Laurencekirk, that’s simply not going to happen. Meantime, drivers risk their lives every day.”
In a letter to David Anderson, head of transport economics, analysis and research at Transport Scotland, Mr Don pointed out: “There is no possibility of there being enough building close to the south junction for this to make a significant contribution.”
Mr Don quoted a passage from the Aberdeenshire Local Development Plan, which stated: ‘…the land values in Laurencekirk are not sufficient to afford both trunk road improvements, and may make development in Laurencekirk undeliverable.’
He added: “The Scottish Government has put significant investment into the reopening of Laurencekirk Railway Station and Mearns Academy.
“To get the best out of that investment, we need more housebuilding. For that to happen, we need a flyover.”
Mr Don has been campaigning for a flyover for many years on the grounds that the current junction is dangerous to road users.
This is a view shared by many, and getting a flyover at Laurencekirk was identified as the number one priority at a community engagement exercise in Laurencekirk last December.
It was recently discussed in the Scottish Parliament when it came before the Public Petitions Committee at the end of last year.
It is due to be talked about further later this month when it will be on the Infrastructure and Capital Investment Committee agenda.