Green light for A80 motorway upgrade
The A80 road between Stepps and Haggs in Glasgow will be upgraded to motorway standard, it was announced today.
The work, which is estimated to cost between £130 and £150 million, is expected to start construction in 2008 and be completed by 2011.
The scheme, which is approximately 18 km, will see the following works carried out:
- Stepps to Mollinsburn - construction of 8 km of dual two-lane carriageway and hard shoulders
- Mollinburns to Auchenkilns - upgrading of 2.7 km to dual three-lane carriageway and
- Auchenkilns to Haggs - upgrading of 7.3 km of existing A80, including hard shoulders and introduction of climbing lanes
Transport Minister Tavish Scott said:
"The A80 forms an essential part of the trunk road network between central Scotland and the north east and is one of the most heavily used roads in Scotland.
"Upgrading this major section of our trunk road network will improve road safety for everyone using it, reduce delays and improve journey times. The scheme will also improve accessibility and bring environmental benefits for people living in the area.
"When completed this new road will be of benefit to both local communities and the Scottish economy."
A public local inquiry (PLI) was held in October 2005. The task for the Reporter was to consider the pros and cons of the proposed route in the context of the objections received and to recommend whether or not the roads orders and compulsory purchase order should be made.
There has been considerable local objection to the proposal, particularly from an umbrella group led by former officers of Cumbernauld Development Corporation.
The Reporter has concluded that there would be significant benefits in terms of reducing traffic congestion and he has therefore recommended that the proposal should be authorised.
The principal argument against the scheme was that it should be constructed on an alternative route through the Kelvin Valley. The detailed scheme assessments have shown that route to perform poorly in environmental and economic terms in comparison with the published proposal. The design of the on - line section will include mitigation against noise and visual intrustion for those propereties close to the existing A80.
The Strategic Roads Review in 1999 concluded that no further consideration would be given to the Kelvin Valley Route on environmental grounds. While the published ('on-line') proposal substantially follows the line of the existing A80 between the M73 and Haggs, it includes a bypass of Chryston, Moodiesburn and Muirhead joining to the existing M80 Stepps Bypass at Hornshill.
The scheme will be dual two lane motorway between Hornshill and the M73, dual three lane motorway between the M73 and the new Auchenkilns Junction, and dual two lane motorway between Auchenkilns and Haggs.