£24m for Laurencekirk south junction

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The Scottish Government has put aside £24m for the south junction at Laurencekirk it was announced today.

The funding is part of £254m package of support for Aberdeen City and Aberdeenshire separate from the City Region Deal announced today by the UK Government.

An upgrade of the A90/A937 south junction to a grade-separated junction was identified as the preferred option for improving the A90 at Laurencekirk back in June 2015.

The solution came following a detailed appraisal commissioned by Nestrans which considered the key transport problems, issues, opportunities and constraints on the corridor and developed objectives to appraise alternative options.

Campaigners and community groups have been fighting for a junction for years and consider a two flyover approach being considered the best approach.

Residents had been left frustrated by the lack of details regarding the construction of a flyover at the notorious Laurencekirk junction.

The extra funding being announced by the Scottish Government will help make a step change to the economy of the North East, through;

-An initial £200 million additional funding to help improve journey times and increase capacity on key rail links between Aberdeen and the Central Belt.

-£24 million of funding for the trunk roads programme to support improvements to the key A90/A937 south junction at Laurencekirk.

-£10 million for extension of digital infrastructure in the Aberdeen and Aberdeenshire area above and beyond the commitment through the City Deal.

-£20 million in infrastructure funding to unlock housing sites that are of strategic importance to the local authorities as well as 5 year certainty on £130 million of affordable housing grant

Welcoming the extra funding, Cabinet Secretary for Infrastructure, Investment and Cities Keith Brown said said: “This announcement of additional funding sends an unequivocal message that Aberdeen and the North East remain central to driving future growth and prosperity in Scotland.

“While I support the City Deal agreement, the Scottish Government recognises that there is more support that can be made available to the region and that will deliver real economic benefits. That is why we have decided to invest £254 million of additional Scottish Government support in key infrastructure in the North East to cement Aberdeen as one of the world’s leading cities for business and industry. It is clear that the appetite of the Councils, and the needs of the area require more.

“This additional funding includes £20 million to unlock strategic housing development sites which will deliver affordable housing in the region and a further £10 million to deliver competitive digital solutions to support economic development.”

“The £224 million investment in the transport infrastructure will support improvements to the trunk road and strategic rail networks, including infrastructure improvements, double tracking at key pinch points, and other opportunities to improve journey times to the central belt and on to London, increasing capacity for passenger and freight services, supporting jobs and growth and providing an economic boost to the cities and communities of the North East.

“A grade-separated junction at Laurencekirk has been a long-standing commitment of the Scottish Government and we have been working hard with the two local authorities and Nestrans to deliver this much-needed scheme for the people of the north east as soon as possible, bringing improved road safety and economic benefits to road users and the local community in Laurencekirk and the north Angus area.

“This funding reaffirms our commitment to Aberdeen City and shire and supports over £1 billion of investment in the area including £50 million for the Haudagain improvement works.”