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Council Welcomes Go Ahead

Issued: 6 Mar 2007

Council Welcomes Go Ahead for Final Phase of 'Road to the Isles'

The Highland Council has warmly welcomed news that a contract has been let for the fifth and final phase of upgrading of the A 830 Mallaig ~ Lochailort road. Councillor Charlie King, who is local member as well as chairman of the Council's TEC Services Committee, is delighted that the four-mile stretch from Arisaig to Loch nam Uamh is to be upgraded to modern two-lane carriageway.

He said: "I am absolutely delighted that the final piece in the jigsaw is about to start. Many of my constituents have been pressing for years to bring this to fruition and their efforts are now being rewarded. It will provide safe, faster and more reliable travel for local residents and visitors alike, and also a welcome boost for the economy of the West Highlands, including Skye and the Western Isles. I am grateful to the officials and politicians in the Scottish Executive and Holyrood for overcoming all the immense difficulties on this last section and awarding the final contract and the removal of this last section of single track road."

Council Vice-Convener Councillor Michael Foxley, who was councillor for Mallaig and the Small Isles for 10 years from 1986, echoed Councillor King's welcome.

He said: "This is great news for the area and marks the end of a sustained campaign by the Council to win improvements to this lifeline road. Charlie King deserves huge credit for his behind the scenes work over more than 20 years."

Announcing that Morrison Construction has been awarded the contract to upgrade the road, Tavish Scott, Transport Minister, said: 'These are vital improvements to an important link in the Highland trunk road network. The Road to the Isles is a key route for both locals and tourists. This work will reduce delays, benefit the local economy, and improve safety.

"In some ways, this is the end of an era ~ the road is famous both locally and nationally for its single track status, but I imagine there will be no complaints. This work is crucial. It will be a welcome boost for the people of the West Highlands who depend on it so much, giving them reliable access to the north and south. Improving roads across the Highland and Islands, and across Scotland as a whole, is a priority of this devolved government."

The project has attracted £3 million funding from the European Regional Development Fund.

© 2010 Highland Public Services Partnership.
Project part-financed by the European Union (European Regional Development Fund) within the INTERREG IIIB Northern Periphery Programme