The outline strategy identifies packages of design and development work to be progressed over the next few years with the objective of completing the full dualling between Inverness and Aberdeen by 2030.
This includes taking forward:
- Preliminary engineering and strategic environmental assessment work along the A96 corridor
- Ongoing design work between Inshes and Nairn, including a Nairn Bypass assessment of possible options for bypasses in the following towns – Forres, Elgin, Keith and Inverurie
Brown (pictured) said: “Our plans to dual the A96 by 2030 will deliver around 86 miles of improvements between the cities of Inverness and Aberdeen.
“Dualling this important road is a significant undertaking which will require careful in-depth planning and design. This will ensure we deliver the right scheme to help tackle congestion while providing better journey time reliability and road safety for all users.
“To help us develop our plans, a significant amount of preliminary assessment, initial survey work and consultation will be carried out. Although our plans for dualling the A96 are less advanced than the A9, we are committed to investing in this strategically important route.
“Our work now is therefore the first, but no less important, step in developing a robust plan to improve connectivity between Scotland’s two northernmost cities, with the objective of completing full dualling by 2030.”
Transport Scotland is also currently progressing route option assessment work on the section between Smithton and Nairn and related work on a Nairn Bypass.