A83 Taskforce meets in Arrochar

Members of the A83 taskforce have held their first meeting of the year in Arrochar today and been given an update on the programme of landslide mitigation measures along the route.

The group, which is chaired by Transport Minister Keith Brown, discussed the continuing progress of the work being carried out to reduce the risk of landslides impacting on the trunk road network as well as other minor improvement schemes on the A83 as recommended in the Route Study.

While much of the recent work has concentrated on the Rest and Be Thankful area, as this was most at risk, the group heard that Transport Scotland has already undertaken investigations at other areas of high landslide risk along the route. Recommendations from these studies will inform the future programme of works which will target the highest priority areas identified at each site.

Taskforce members also had the opportunity to discuss the recent implementation of the local diversion route, The Old Military Road. This was used for the first time at the beginning of March when there was a slip at the Rest.

Transport Minister Keith Brown said:

“This meeting was originally planned to go ahead in the Summer but I thought it was important that we let communities in the area know now that we are committed to the programme of work that is managing and reducing the risk of landslides along the A83 trunk road.

“Over the last 7 years, we have invested over £32 million on the A83. This includes, £7.5 million on the A83 around the Rest and be Thankful, a clear sign of our intent to find solutions to keep the A83 open and operational.

“We cannot prevent landslides from occurring, but we can help manage and reduce the impact and disruption caused to the public and local businesses using this vital route. This was demonstrated during this most recent landslide where we used the Old Military Road local diversion route for the first time. It helped cut the traditional diversion by more than forty miles and saved people time and money as a result.

“As our work around the Rest and Be Thankful nears completion, the netting installed in this area has already prevented debris from the hillside reaching the road, we continue to look forward.

“Investigations at other known high landslide risk areas on the A83 at Cairndow, GlenKinglas and Loch Shira are on-going and we are looking at options to provide mitigation of a similar level to the Rest and Be Thankful at these locations.

“Our budget discussion for the next financial year is on-going but this work is a priority and I want to see the level of momentum and commitment that we have seen on the A83 continuing in future.

“I look forward to meeting the group again in June.”

Published 18 Mar 2014 Tags