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Daily Record
Daily Record
Fraser Clarke

"Ground must be broken" on A83 relief road, says Argyll and Bute Council leader

Communities need to see “a significant leap forward” towards a permanent solution to the closure-hit A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful, it has been warned.

Argyll and Bute Council leader Robin Currie made the comments as he called on ground to be broken on the long awaited project for an interim and permanent solution to the landslip closed route into West Argyll.

Currently the stretch is frequently closed by landslides caused by poor weather, sending drivers on a two-hour detour via Crianlarich.

Last year Transport Scotland agreed on a long-term plan for the route, with ministers favouring building a new A83 – potentially including a tunnel. However, work could take up to a decade to complete.

In August, the Scottish Government announced a £25million investment for design and development work for the route through Glen Croe. The council welcomed the funding announcement and is now seeking a commitment that work will start imminently.

Previously Councillor Currie stressed that a solution was proving a significant barrier in getting people to visit and move to the local area.

Catch pits have been installed, but work on a more permanent solution is still awaited. (BEAR SCOTLAND)

And he warned that communities were now facing “further winters of uncertainty”, saying: “We need to see a significant leap forward towards a permanent solution our communities desperately need; where ground is broken and work progressed for both the interim and permanent solution at the Rest and Be Thankful.

“Although we welcome progress, our communities and businesses desperately need a permanent fix at the Rest. Without it, we are facing further winters of uncertainty, inevitable disruption and financial hardship.

“This council, alongside our communities, has been calling for action for over a decade. We have engaged with Transport Ministers and petitioned for change.

“The A83 is a vital route and lifeline for Argyll and Bute and we simply cannot afford to wait any longer for that permanent solution.

“We repeat this call to national government, to press home the case for urgent action without delay so that our businesses, our communities and our visitors finally have the reliable lifeline that Argyll and Bute deserves.”

Motorists have faced lengthy delays and detours. (Daily Record)

Dumbarton MSP Jackie Baillie added: "“I completely agree with Argyll and Bute Council that there has to be significant progress as the communities and businesses which rely on the A83 are suffering.

“They see no end in sight and are understandably frustrated by the lack of swift action.

“Along with fellow MSPs I have been in contact directly with Transport Minister, Jenny Gilruth to try and seek a quick resolution to this ongoing, severe problem.

“I will continue to push for a definitive timeline for solutions in the short and long term to end the suffering from those most impacted by the issues on the A83.”

Transport Scotland were contacted for comment but were unable to respond prior to our deadline.

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