Local MSP, Jackie Baillie, today questioned the Cabinet Secretary for Transport in Parliament on the disruption caused to residents, businesses, workers and visitors in Argyll and Bute due to the closure of the A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful last week.
The A83 was closed at the Rest and Be Thankful for a total of nine days from 9 October to 18 October following a landslip. At the same time, the Old Military Road, which is used as a diversionary route, was closed for a week over the same period from 9 October to 15 October due to concerns that the severe weather could cause further landslides.
During an exchange in the chamber, Baillie asked the Cabinet Secretary to undertake a full options appraisal to find a permanent solution for the A83 to ensure that Argyll and Bute could remain open for business all year round. The MSP has also written to the First Minister in support of Argyll and Bute Council’s request for a meeting with the Cabinet Secretary for Transport and the Cabinet Secretary for Finance to look at possible options going forward.
The MSP also praised the staff and workers of Bear Scotland and Transport Scotland who worked tirelessly to restore both routes as quickly as possible.
“This is not the first time that we have seen the A83 closed at the Rest and Be Thankful and, whilst I am grateful for all the efforts to reopen both roads, it is time that a permanent solution is found.
“Residents, businesses, workers and visitors in Argyll and Bute rely on the A83 to commute and move goods and services up and down the country.
“I have today asked the Cabinet Secretary for Transport to work with Argyll and Bute Council and Transport Scotland and commission a full options appraisal for the A83 to find a permanent solution for the route to provide certainty for local residents and businesses.”