Fundamentally dangerous

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Mearns Community Councillor Jim Stuart is refusing to let go on the subject of Market Road in Laurencekirk, describing the road as “fundamentally dangerous.”

Aberdeenshire Council carried out work on the road some time ago, which included a new wide pavement, with the result that the road is narrower than in was before, below the minimum recommended according to Mr Stuart.

Speaking at the January meeting of the community council, Mr Stuart said: “Somebody has made a mistake and it must be put right.

“A private developer would not be allowed to put in a road at that width, so somebody has got to sort it out.”

Market Road is widely used by lorries and agricultrual vehicles and two such vehicles can’t pass each other without going on to the pavement, or the verge next to the railway line at the other side.

“Lorries passing each other have to take in their mirrors. This road should be put back to its original width.”

Chairman David Nelson said he had received a communication from a resident saying the road was now safer for pedestrians and that the community council should leave the matter well alone.

Member Alan Mowat commented: “We do not get complaints about speeding anymore, whereas we got repeated complaints before.”

He asked whether it might be possible to have the lorries go in only one direction.

Chris Rushbridge asked whether passing places could be considered.

Mr Stuart added that the road now has too many gullies along its edge with the result that lorries are going into them and could become destabalised.

“The design of this road is terrible and totally unacceptable.”

The community council agreed once again to write to the roads department.

Earlier in the meeting Mr Stuart asked the council to request a pavement at the entrance to the Cairnview housing development. He said people were forced to walk on the road at the location.

The council was told that traffic calming measures proposed for the Garvocklea area of Laurencekirk will not be implemented at the moment. A 20 mph limit will be put forward instead.

Aberdeenshire Council say they are carrying out a review of the rest of Laurencekirk and will issue any traffic orders required at the same time.

The local authority say they are looking at the possibility of extending the Robson Car Park in Laurencekirk as there is some ground under their control. The extension of the car park was opposed by neighbours on a previous occasion.

Members were informed about the start of work to create a slip lane at Laurencekirk’s north exit on to the A90.

There will be traffic restrictions for a period of three months.

A meeting will be held in the Mearns Community Centre on February 15 at 3pm at which BEAR Scotland will explain what they are proposing to do and how the road users will be affected.