Russell urges A83 route to be done in ‘record time’

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Argyll & Bute MSP Michael Russell has welcomed the decision by Transport Scotland to confirm the Glen Croe option as the preferred corridor for a road to replace the A83 Rest and Be Thankful.

Mr Russell, for the SNP, commented: ‘This road was built in the wrong place many years ago and has become one of the worst infrastructure problems in Scotland, exacerbated in recent years by greatly increased intensity of, and amount of, rainfall.

‘The work on mitigation, which continues, has kept it open but not without interruption and the constant difficulties caused by landslips and potential dangers have been damaging to the local economy and to the area.

‘I have worked hard with many people to press for more to be done and the decision to build a new road is the right one.

‘Now we need that new road to be built in record time and my first criteria for choosing the final route is that one – which will take least time to build.

‘My second criteria is resilience – the new road has to be open all the time and be a permanently safe and secure replacement.’

Mr Russell, who steps down from the seat this time, said he recently sent a letter, signed by himself and Argyll and Bute Council leader Robin Currie to transport secretary Michael Matheson MSP that insisted the road should be ‘commissioned, built, completed and opened during the lifetime of the next parliament’.

He said: ‘I hope in fact it can be done even more quickly than that and I would urge Transport Scotland to come to a speedy decision on the route and then get on and build it.’