15 October 2010

A75 dual carriageway opens early

A £6.5 million dual carriageway scheme on the A75 has opened to traffic, over two months ahead of schedule.

The 1.4 mile Cairntop to Barlae scheme will provide improved access to and from the west coast ports, supporting businesses, communities and tourism across south west Scotland and beyond.

Transport Minister Stewart Stevenson said:

“This early dual carriageway completion is great news for south west Scotland and the west coast ports.

“The A75 is a vital link connecting Cairnryan and Stranraer to the rest of Scotland and this £6.5 million scheme will now provide a dedicated overtaking opportunity, helping traffic flow and meaning quicker, safer journeys for the thousands of tourists, freight and local motorists who use this route each day.

“I am delighted to see this project completed so quickly, allowing these benefits to be realised much sooner than scheduled. This scheme also supports plans to relocate Stena’s port to Cairnryan, further enhancing these connections.

“The Scottish Government is committed to continued investment in the A75 and A77, with £35.5m of schemes completed and a further £53.5m earmarked for seven more projects along these key connecting routes.”

Alan Gordon, Stena Line’s Project Director for Loch Ryan Port added:

“We are delighted to see that Cairntop to Barlae scheme has now opened and ahead of schedule too. 

“The A75 is a vital part of South West Scotland’s road infrastructure and will play a key role in helping to maximise the benefit of Stena Line’s new Loch Ryan Port opening in Autumn 2011. 

“We would like to congratulate Minister Stevenson and his team for their speed of progress and look forward to the completion of the additional planned road upgrade schemes to and from the new port facility which will be of significant benefit to the local and national economy of Scotland.”

The contract was awarded in December last year and was originally scheduled to last 12 months. The road has therefore opened 10 weeks ahead of schedule.

The project, which was undertaken by RJ McLeod, has seen a new eastbound carriageway constructed on the site of a disused railway line, with the existing A75 becoming the new westbound route, giving both east and westbound dedicated safer overtaking opportunities.

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