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Volume of trucks on A75 means 'road needs more investment'

FIGURES showing the volume of trucks using the A75 is far higher than the national average underscores the need for improvements on the so-called 'Euro route', says MSP Finlay Carson. Under a Freedom of Information request, the Scottish Government confirmed that the average use of HGV vehicles on the A75 in 2019 in both directions was significantly higher than the national average. Last year, The Scottish national average of HGV's on the trunk road network for the period 2019 was 14pc. For the same 2019 period, on the A75 the level westbound was 20.4pc, and eastbound 21.0pc, The Galloway and West Dumfries MSP says the response published by the SNP Government "highlights their damning failures in investment infrastructure in the south-west." However, Transport Scotland say that since 2007, over £50 million has been invested in six road improvement projects along the length of the A75. Mr Carson says with the UK Government highlighting the importance of the connections to the Cairnryan ferry port through their plans to upgrade the A66, and politicians in Northern Ireland also urging investment, it is the SNP who are continuing to let constituents down. He also highlighted that it is almost two years since Transport Secretary Michael Matheson attended a meeting with him alongside ferry firms Stena and P&O who warned the Cabinet Secretary of the urgent need to upgrade the road in order to protect the port. “It comes as no surprise that usage of HGV vehicles on the A75 is significantly higher than other trunk routes in Scotland. “These figures only go to highlight once again the urgent need for the SNP Government to urgently upgrade infrastructure in the south-west, which they have failed dismally on over the last 13 years. “With the UK Government mentioning the importance of the ports as part of their A66 upgrades and politicians in Northern Ireland continuing to lobby for improvements, it is the SNP who are causing the delays here. “The Transport Secretary is fully aware of the importance of the ports from ferry operators point of view, but has failed to do anything in almost two years in the job. “Motorists are sick and tired of having to travel on roads which are in an appalling state with no sign of any shovels coming to the ground anytime soon. “Instead of asking constituents to write to Parliamentary committees, perhaps it is time SNP politicians started calling out the total failure of their government to recognise and act on the need for infrastructure upgrades.” Transport Scotland, the executive arm of the Scottish Government on transportation, said: “In January we published the South West Scotland Transport Study Initial Appraisal. The study has a focus on improving access to the ports at Cairnryan and is looking at road, rail, public transport and active travel provision on the key strategic corridors including A75, A76, A77 and A701 together with the railway lines to Stranraer and Carlisle via Kilmarnock and Dumfries. “The Cabinet Secretary for Transport has met with representatives from Stena Line, P&O and Belfast Harbour to discuss their views on the South West Scotland Transport Study (SWSTS) and National Transport Strategy. The Scottish Government has welcomed an offer of further evidence from these partners to help inform the decision making processes.” "Since 2007, we have invested over £50 million in six road improvement projects along the length of the A75 and around £35 million in four road improvement projects along the A77, providing additional overtaking opportunities. "Further planned investment for a bypass at Maybole with estimated constructions costs of £30 million will provide better journey time reliability for motorists and businesses accessing Cairnryan. In addition, £202 million has been spent in the maintenance and upkeep of the A75, A76 and A77 over the last twelve years. "The second Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR2) is underway and is currently identifying the strategic transport interventions required to provide Scotland with a network fit for the 21st Century, which will inform Scottish Ministers investment decisions for the next 20 years." They invited the public to view the South West Scotland Initial Appraisal at https://www.transport.gov.scot/publication/south-west-scotland-transport-study-initial-appraisal-case-for-change

<< back Published: 05 Jun 2020, 18:39

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