Ground investigations are due to get under way at the A90 Laurencekirk junction next week.
Transport Scotland has awarded a £300,000 contract for the work, which is expected to last eight weeks from Monday.
A preferred option to upgrade the busy junction was announced last year.
A Transport Scotland spokesperson said: “We are continuing to progress the design work for the much-needed Laurencekirk Junction Improvement scheme, having let the public see and comment on the preferred option for the scheme last summer.
“We are now taking forward the detailed design of the preferred option with a view to publishing draft orders later this year, and these ground investigations will provide the detailed information needed to progress that work.
“We apologise for any inconvenience these works will cause and would thank road users and local communities in advance for their patience during the works.
“The contractor will closely monitor the operation of the traffic management measures to ensure that delays are kept to a minimum.”