Lib-Dems make fresh Mearns junction call

North East Liberal Democrats have renewed their demand that the Scottish Government commits to building a grade-separated junction on the A90 dual carriageway at Laurencekirk.

Regional MSP Alison McInnes said: “The Scottish Government is now receiving an extra £394m of capital funding from the UK Government up to 2015. This comes as a result of decisions in the UK Government’s recent 2012 Autumn Statement.

“Yet the SNP will still not honour their 2011 election campaign promise and act on making the Laurencekirk junction on the A90 safer.

“I have repeatedly challenged the transport minister over whether the government will commit to building a flyover or underpass at this accident blackspot.

“The junction has seen many fatal and serious accidents in the last decade. Even one is too many. The government must take whatever action is necessary to make this junction safe. The funding is there.”

The North East transport partnership Nestrans also backs the campaign for a grade-separated junction. Its chairman, Liberal Democrat councillor Peter Argyle, commented that if a flyover “could be built for a garden centre between Dundee and Perth on the A90 then surely Laurencekirk had a very strong case.”

Councillor Argyle – who is also chairman of Aberdeenshire Council’s infrastructure services committee - continued: “The Scottish Government has recently announced plans for A9 dualling between Perth and Inverness which have included grade separated junctions throughout. If they can do that on the A9 they can do it on the A90.”

Mrs McInnes added: “It is imperative that priority is given to improving this section of road. I am told that 20,000 vehicles are travelling north or south and 5000 vehicles negotiating the junction from Laurencekirk and Montrose.

“I am writing to the transport minister once more to press the case. I understand that the Scottish Government has said details of how the money would be spent would be revealed ‘shortly’. Surely the government will see sense and include major improvements at Laurencekirk.”