Public asked for input on eleven options for new access to Argyll and Bute

A83 Rest and Be Thankful - wide shot

Following the setting up of a dedicated Transport Scotland project team to undertake more detailed environmental and engineering assessment, as well as stakeholder engagement, eleven corridor options for the Access to Argyll and Bute (A83) project can be viewed from today on a new section of the Transport Scotland website.

The potential options are being assessed by a new dedicated project team to determine a preferred route corridor by Spring 2021.

Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said:

“Following the recent landslips at the A83 Rest and Be Thankful, I understand the frustration and disruption that these bring for local communities and road users.

“While our previous and on-going investment in catch pits has helped keep the road open for an estimated 48 days when it would otherwise have closed, I realise people are looking for a long term solution to dealing with landslips at the site and we are committed to delivering one.

“Transport Scotland is now taking forward the project development and assessment work required to deliver an alternative infrastructure solution to the existing A83, in parallel with the second Strategic Transport Projects Review.

“We are committed to placing public engagement and meaningful dialogue with directly affected communities and other stakeholders at the heart of the development and delivery of our plans for improving the route. We want to ensure that communities have the opportunity to comment on the proposals for the scheme at every stage in the process.

“From today we are launching a new website for the design work and the eleven corridor options under consideration can be viewed there. Please visit the site and give us your input by 30 October.

“We recognise that the timescales for a an alternative to the current route are frustrating for the local community but in recognition of the pressures the current situation brings, we remain committed to progressing substantial shorter term investment in the existing A83 in tandem with the work to identify a permanent solution as part of a two phased approach.

“This work underlines the Scottish Government’s commitment to continued work with key stakeholders and local communities to ensure that Argyll & Bute remains open for business.”

Jo Blewett Transport Scotland’s Project Director for the Access to Argyll and Bute (A83) project said:

“This is the first of several engagement exercises that will take place between now and Spring 2021 and at this stage we are particularly interested in any local constraints or issues that will help inform our design and assessment work.

“As part of our design work, we are also seeking contact from local community groups to help plan our future programme of engagement.”