Need for A90 flyover “blindingly obvious” says MSP

THE CASE for a flyover at the Marykirk junction on the A90 is to be examined by the Scottish Parliament’s infrastructure committee.

Angus North and Mearns MSP Nigel Don said this week that the case for a flyover at the junction on the A90 is “blindingly obvious” and urged all supporters of the campaign, begun eight years ago by Hillside woman Jill Fotheringham, to make their voices heard by the committee.

The matter has been passed on by the Parliament’s public petitons comittee which has been dealing with it up to now.

Mr Don, who has criticised roads agency Transport Scotland for relying on expert reports instead of listening to local people and visiting the site themselves, said that the case for not carrying out the work is “just plain wrong”.

He said: “Roads and transport are a major part of the infrastructure committee’s remit and we can rely on the committee convener, Maureen Watt, to do a thorough job.

“All of us who believe this junction is dangerous now need to make sure our views are heard at that committee. Transport Scotland appears to be saying that as things stand, no flyover is required. But anyone who has stood at the junction, as I have, and watched articulated lorries, tractors with bogies and school buses trying to cross in the face of speeding motorists will know that Transport Scotland is just plain wrong.”

Mr Don praised the efforts of Ms Fotheringham, the Laurencekirk Development Trust and local man Charles Gordon who have all written to the Parliament making the case for a flyover on the grounds that existing traffic levels fully justify a safer junction.

Ms Fotheringham this week said she welcomes the move and said she is pleased with the continuing support for the campaign both in the local area and at Holyrood.

She said: “I feel it’s a step in the right direction. The petitions committee had the option of closing it down because there is little more they can do but they’ve chosen to transfer it instead.

“I just feel we’re hitting our heads against a brick wall with Transport Scotland who say the junction’s fine. If it’s fine, why did they impose a 50 mph speed limit? It’s clearly not fine. Personally, I think they’ve sat back and waited for developers to come forward because they don’t want to spend money on it. That way the work would be done and they wouldn’t have to pay for it.

“The campaign is on Facebook and I’d like as many supporters as possible to register to help bring this forward. There’s support for it but it’s a case of finding ways of progressing it.

Mr Don also criticised the roads agency and said it is “hard to understand” why the need for an upgraded junction is not acknowledged.

He said: “The need for this flyover is so blindingly obvious. They say that “No objective-led, robust evidence-based appraisal has been provided” to justify a flyover. I think the best way to provide that evidence would be for officials from Transport Scotland to come with me and stand at the junction between 7am and 8am any weekday morning. I think that might help convince them that their desktop surveys don’t tell the full story.”