Murdo Fraser MSP asks Transport Minister to confirm future of A9 dualling project
Murdo Fraser MSP has asked the Transport Minister to clarify the future of the £3 billion A9 dualling project between Perth and Inverness.
The Scottish Conservative politician has written to Michael Matheson MSP after it had been revealed that the SNP Government has removed both the A9 and A96 dualling schemes from its Strategic Transport Projects Review, despite Transport Scotland officials telling MSPs that the review would consider the future of both schemes.
Instead, market consultation will be undertaken this year to identify the most ‘efficient delivery model and programme.’
And the future of the mammoth project was also cast in doubt after the First Minister today (Wednesday) conceded that the proposals for both dualling schemes are “ambitious” and couldn’t confirm that the A9 project will be completed by its target date of 2025.
Mr Fraser campaigned to have the road dualled and feels it would be a “bitter blow” if the much-needed projects’ future is in doubt or will be delayed.
Commenting, Mr Fraser, who represents the Mid Scotland and Fife region, said: “The SNP Government has removed the A9 from its Strategic Transport Projects Review. If this is the case, it would appear that the project faces likely delays and thus would not meet the Scottish Government’s pledge to dual the road by 2025.
“At present, one of the 11 sections of the A9 dualling scheme has been completed with another to follow shortly. It would be a massive blow for those of us who have campaigned for the dualling of the A9 between Perth and Inverness to be told that the project is either on hold or may face delays in reaching its targeted completion date.
“I have written to the Transport Minister as the A9 dualling project is vital for all those who use the route from Perth to Inverness. Local people ran an energetic campaign for years to get this dangerous road upgraded.
“After many years it was agreed to do so by the SNP Government, so it would be an absolute betrayal if this policy was delayed now. The Transport Minister needs to confirm what the timetable is for the A9 dualling and to confirm if there will be delays in its completion or if it will be downsized.”