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15 December 2015

Stevenson Welcomes Passenger Group's Support for Rail Link

Banffshire & Buchan Coast SNP MSP Stewart Stevenson has welcomed a report from transport watchdog the Scottish Association for Public Transport (SAPT) on the benefits of a new rail link to Buchan.

SAPT has been involved in public transport issues for over 50 years. Their report concludes:

“The study area from Fraserburgh, Peterhead and Ellon to Aberdeen has poor public transport connectivity, and is particularly isolated from the national rail network compared with other comparable areas in Scotland.

“The high growth in usage of stations at Inverurie (+450% since 2002), Dyce (+239% since 2002), and Laurencekirk (+40% since reopening in 2009) confirms that where train travel is appreciably faster than car travel, the rail service successfully generates a high level of usage and attracts modal shift from car. The Borders Rail Link has decisively confirmed the effectiveness of reintroducing train services where these can offer journey times competitive with or faster than car travel.

“An initial Ellon-Dyce-Aberdeen train service with Park+Ride provision could be co-ordinated with improved bus connections from Peterhead and Fraserburgh to Ellon. As well as giving a fast 28 minute link from Ellon to Aberdeen, this would bring the benefit of seamless travel from the study area to the rest of Scotland and the world. Connections at Dyce would be available to Aberdeen Airport, and the Inverness line via Inverurie. At Aberdeen station seamless cross-platform connections would be available to the south. And in future, the local train service from Ellon could be extended to start at Fraserburgh and/or Peterhead . . .”

Commenting, Stewart Stevenson said:

“With the opening of the Borders Railway, Peterhead and Fraserburgh are now the towns of over 10,000 residents which are furthest from a rail station.

“A line to a station at Ellon would be a very useful first step to getting Buchan back on track. Park and rail facilities there would benefit both commuters and vacationers.

“As Honorary President of SAPT I have been co-operating with people of all political persuasions and of none to help this important initiative forward.”
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