£7.4m Capital Allocation in Highland for Strategic Road Schemes

Members at last week’s (5 May 2021) meeting of the Council’s Economy and Infrastructure Committee have agreed the distribution of the £7.4M allocation of the £20M capital budget during years 2021/22 and 2022/23.

In February of this year, Members of the Economy and Infrastructure Committee agreed the distribution of an additional £20M of capital funding for road maintenance.

The Committee split the funding into five categories, agreeing to allocate £7.4M for strategic assets and structural maintenance.

The Committee agreed the following:

Road improvement projects for the A832 Slattadale (0.6km) and A890 Strathcarron (0.65km) which will include widening and a bridge replacement.

The designs for these projects are almost complete, at a cost of £2.2M;

Infirmary Bridge in Inverness to be allocated £550,000 for maintenance works;

Portree link Road to be allocated £200,000;

Renewable Energy Developer Match Funding to be allocated £500k;

Match funding of £330,000 for additional Strategic Timber Transport Schemes (STTS) on the A897 (Sutherland) and B9176 (Ross and Cromarty);

Three schemes in Caithness and Sutherland identified as requiring major maintenance from the Scottish Road Maintenance Condition Survey (SRMCS) results to be allocated £553,000 as future Area budgets were unlikely to be able to cope with this work; and

The remainder of the budget (£3.067M) to be allocated to surface treatments such as resurfacing and surface dressing, to improve the road condition of the strategic network.

It is expected that underspends in any project will be used for further carriageway and footway surface treatment works and ancillary items such as minor structures, cattle grids, vehicle restraint systems (safety fencing), signs, drainage, etc.

Chair of the Economy and Infrastructure Committee, Cllr Trish Robertson said:

“The £7.4m for roads is to be welcomed. Many of our roads are suffering from lack of attention due to limited resources over a number of years.

“This allocation will allow us to address the poor condition on some of our roads and assets across the region. The extra equipment will aid our programmes going forward.”

The Highland Council has the longest road network in the UK with 4,000 miles of local roads, 1,000 miles of footpaths and 1,400 bridges spanning a region covering one third of Scotland.