40 km of active travel routes proposed on A96 scheme
New proposals have been revealed for over 40 kilometres of shared-use path for cyclists, pedestrians and equestrians on the A96 Dualling Hardmuir to Fochabers scheme.
The path will be located mainly in the new road corridor and will integrate with existing active travel facilities, therefore connecting the communities of: Auldearn, Brodie, Forres, Alves, Elgin, Llanhbryde, Mosstodloch and Fochabers.
The new active travel facilities, along with changes to the alignment design and junction layouts in some areas, can be viewed at a series of drop-ins being held this week, from today (October 29) for the Hardmuir to Fochabers scheme.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said:
“The Scottish Government is committed to dualling the A96 between Inverness and Aberdeen, underlining its commitment to connecting Scotland’s cities with a high quality transport system that will generate sustainable economic growth.
“As well as providing a safer dualled route and bringing savings in journey times for motorists using the route, we are also committed to improving active travel facilities throughout the country. This new, 40 kilometre plus, shared-use path will improve connectivity for many communities along the route between Hardmuir and Fochabers.
“In addition, the updated designs for some of the junctions will result in reduced impacts on agricultural land, reduced landscape and visual effects and lower material requirements.
“When completed, the scheme will provide better transport connections in Moray and to the wider transport network, bring relief to communities currently affected by through traffic and save over 20 minutes for road users travelling between Hardmuir and Fochabers.
“I would encourage everyone with an interest in this important scheme to come along to one of the drop-ins this week or view the design updates online and give us their views.”
As a further confirmation of the Government’s commitment to the dualling programme, Transport Scotland has announced the intention to award two contracts to undertake ground investigations as part of the Hardmuir to Fochabers scheme.
The two separate contracts, one for Hardmuir to Cloddach and one for Cloddach to East of Fochabers, each costing £1.2 million, are to be awarded to Raeburn Drilling and Geotechnical Ltd.
Subject to completion of a standstill period, work is programmed to start early next year and is expected to last approximately two months, subject to weather conditions.
Although most of the work will be carried out away from the trunk road and adjacent side roads, a small amount of the work will require traffic management measures to allow for work beside the carriageway to be carried out safely. This may include short, alternate single file traffic sections controlled by temporary traffic signals.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure & Connectivity, Michael Matheson said:
“As well as consideration of the feedback received following the drop-ins this week for the Hardmuir to Fochabers scheme, these investigations will provide the key ground information needed as we work towards publishing draft orders.”
Details of the drop-ins as follows:
Tuesday 29th October 2019 – 12 noon – 7 PM
• Forres Town Hall, High St, Forres, IV36 1PB
Wednesday 30th October 2019 – 12 noon – 7 PM
• Elgin Town Hall, 1 Trinity Place, Elgin, IV30 1UL
Thursday 31st October 2019 – 12 noon – 7 PM
• Speymouth Hall, Stynie Road, Mosstodloch, IV32 7JN
The material on display at the drop-in can be found viewed on the Transport Scotland website