A96 dualling moves forward but progress is slow

24/02/2021
Chris Ames

Scottish infrastructure secretary Michael Matheson has given the go-ahead for the completion of the statutory procedures for a section of the A96 dualling scheme – two years after a public inquiry.

The announcement follows a political row over the Scottish Government’s commitment to dual both the A96 from Inverness to Aberdeen and the A9 from Perth to Inverness, with each project estimated to cost £3bn.

Following a report in Highways, first minister Nicola Sturgeon was asked in the Scottish Parliament to confirm that her Government was committed to completing both projects ‘in full and within the original target timescales’.

She declined to do so, stating: ‘COVID has had an impact on the projects, and we will need to consider exactly what that impact will be going forward.’

She described dualling the A96 as ‘a significant undertaking that requires careful in-depth planning and design’, adding: ‘Once the statutory process concludes, a timetable for progress can be set.’

Mr Matheson, cabinet secretary for transport, infrastructure and connectivity, said his decision regarding the A96 Dualling Inverness to Nairn (including Nairn Bypass) scheme ‘re-enforces our commitment to dualling the A96 and investing in the Highlands’.

He said: ‘We are continuing to progress our ambitious plans to dual the A96 between Inverness and Aberdeen, delivering around 88 miles of upgraded road.

‘Our plans for this section also include nearly 19 miles of off-carriageway shared-use facilities for non-motorised users which will connect local communities along the route and facilitate active travel within the corridor.

‘This huge milestone for the programme leads the way for other sections of the route to follow as we continue to advance the detailed development and assessment of the preferred options for the Hardmuir to Fochabers and East of Huntly to Aberdeen schemes.

‘When completed the dualling programme will bring many benefits to local communities, businesses, visitors and road users living, travelling and working along the corridor including reduced journey times, improved journey time reliability, improved road safety and opportunities for active travel.’

Plans to upgrade the A96 between Inverness and Nairn to dual carriageway with a bypass at Nairn date back to the first Strategic Transport Projects Review (STPR), published by Transport Scotland in 2008, while the intention to fully dual the A96 was announced in December 2011.

Following the development and assessment of the preferred option and the publication in November 2016 of draft Orders and an Environmental Statement, a Public Local Inquiry into the scheme began on 30 October 2018.

This concluded on 20 November 2018, providing recommendations to ministers, that have now been largely accepted by Mr Matheson.

Highways jobs

Support Engineer

£30.585 - £31.557
This is a great opportunity to join a thriving and passionate team. In return, we offer a range of benefits which include... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Engineer (Design and Construction)

£32,234 - £35,745
Applications are sought from experienced Civil and Highways Engineers looking to further their careers in engineering Denbighshire (Sir Ddinbych)
Recruiter: Denbighshire County Council

Waste Services Driver / Loaders

£21,989 to £24,447 per annum
The waste and recycling service is offering Driver/Loader positions. You will need to be a HGV driver and hold your driver CPC card. York, North Yorkshire
Recruiter: City of York Council

Senior Environmental Health Officer

£40.869 - £43.860
We would like to hear from exceptional candidates with broad experience of Private Sector Licensing Schemes, enforcement, and with a... Greenwich, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Royal Borough of Greenwich

Vehicle Technician

£24,982 - £29,577 per annum
This role is permanent for applicants with a Class C Driving Licence.  Sandwell, West Midlands
Recruiter: Sandwell Metropolitan Borough Council

Senior Sustainability Officer (Homes)

£43,860 - £46,839 p.a. inc.
We are looking for a highly driven, creative, flexible and resilient candidate with understanding of... Brent, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Brent Council

Head of Climate, Environment and Waste – South Cambridgeshire District and Cambridge City Councils

£75,619 - £90,288 per annum
We’ve been recognised nationally for our environmental focus and efforts to lead local climate change issues. Cambourne, Cambridge
Recruiter: South Cambridgeshire District Council

Senior Engineer - Structures

£44,632 - £49,298
We’re looking for talented individuals to be part of our expanding team working on everything from local schemes to large £multi-million projects. Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire
Recruiter: Milton Keynes Council

Senior Technician (Structures)

£30.451 - £34.728
We’re looking for talented individuals to be part of our expanding team working on everything from local schemes to large £multi-million projects. Milton Keynes, Buckinghamshire
Recruiter: Milton Keynes Council

Head of Parking & Customer Engagement

£56,100- £63,633 per annum
We are looking for a Head of Parking and Customer Engagement to join us at this critical time for Hounslow. Reporting to the Assistant Director of... London (Greater)
Recruiter: Hounslow London Borough Council

Head of Traffic & Capital Delivery

£56,100 - £63,633 per annum
We are looking for a Head of Traffic and Capital Delivery to join us at this critical time for Hounslow. Reporting to... London (Greater)
Recruiter: Hounslow London Borough Council

Environmental Health Officers (EHORB registered/chartered)

£37,638 - £43,659 per annum
We are looking for 2 x enthusiastic and driven environmental health practitioners to join the Rogue Landlord Taskforce as... Camden, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Camden London Borough Council

Principal Transport & Infrastructure Planning Officer

£51510 - £59400 per annum
Two year fixed term contract with a potential for extension, subject to budget and workload.Calling all transport planners - are you seeking a new ch England, Essex, Chelmsford
Recruiter: Essex County Council

Local Highways Officer

£22,183 - £32,234
We are looking for an enthusiastic candidate who preferably has experience of highway maintenance or a technical background. Cambridgeshire
Recruiter: Cambridgeshire County Council

Structures Asset Manager

£61,334 - £69,090 per annum (salary dependent on experience)
This full-time role will all be primarily based in KCC’s Ashford Henwood depot but travel within Kent will be expected to meet the demands of... Kent
Recruiter: Kent County Council

Highway Operations Manager

£31,339 to £35,754 per annum
The Council is committed to investing in the talent and wellbeing of our staff and can offer a generous annual leave allowance, access to... York, North Yorkshire
Recruiter: City of York Council

HS2 Senior Highways Approvals Officer

£36984 - £38881 per annum
OverviewWith construction work well underway, the impact of High-Speed Two has already been felt by our local communities and businesses across the co England, Buckinghamshire, Aylesbury
Recruiter: Buckinghamshire Council

Principal Sustainability and Climate Change Officer

£40,876 – £42,821 per annum
This is an exciting time for an experienced professional to lead on measures to address the Council’s declaration of a climate emergency Trafford, Greater Manchester
Recruiter: Trafford Council

Deputy Team Manager

£43,860 - £46,839 p.a. inc.
The successful candidate will also be making sure that the practice within the team is fair and professional at all times. Wembley, London (Greater)
Recruiter: Brent Council

Head of Climate Action

£57,817 - £65,823
Driving change to address the climate emergency Stockport, Greater Manchester
Recruiter: Stockport Metropolitan Borough Council

Highways Presents

Highways on Fridays

Register now!

Latest Issue

latest magazine issue

INSIDE:

  • ALARM survey - will the Government listen to long-term funding pleas?
  • The benefits and costs of benefit cost ratios
  • An international winter service tour
View the latest issue

Latest Video