New route to replace landslip-prone Rest and Be Thankful

Following a public consultation, a new road through Glen Croe has been selected from 11 options.

New route to replace landslip-prone Rest and Be Thankful Email
Rest and Be Thankful: A preferred route corridor has been chosen.

A preferred solution to years of landslide problems at the A83 Rest and Be Thankful has been unveiled.

Following a public consultation, a new road through Glen Croe has been selected from 11 options to bypass the notorious stretch and improve access to Argyll and Bute.

Transport bosses confirmed on Thursday that various options will now be considered for the new route, including traditional roads to full tunnel options.

The A83 Rest and Be Thankful has been hit by multiple closures due to landslides over the past few years.

In August 2020, a clean up operation got under way to remove 6000 tonnes of debris that slid down a hillside and blocked the road and its usual diversion route, Old Military Road, leaving motorists with a 60-mile diversion.

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As part of the ongoing public engagement, an interactive story map has been launched to keep local communities and road users informed of progress on the project.

Further short and medium-term mitigation works at the Rest and Be Thankful have also been identified.

A new debris cage, catchpit, debris fencing and flood mitigation measures are being taken forward over the coming months to provide greater protection to the A83 and Old Military Road.

Transport secretary Michael Matheson said: “Identifying the preferred route corridor is a major step forward for this vital work and we are now pushing forward to look at five alternative options within that online corridor and starting the process shortly to appoint design consultants for this work.

“Following substantial public feedback our future assessment work will place particular emphasis on the timescale to deliver these options.

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“As I made clear at the Rural Economy and Connectivity Committee last week, I have asked Transport Scotland to accelerate the preparation and delivery of the scheme where possible given the importance of the route to local communities and road users.

“However, we are required to follow the correct statutory process to ensure a fair and transparent assessment of options and impacts on local communities and road users.

“From today the new story map portal will provide regular updates on the design work as we look at alternative options within the preferred route corridor.

“We are also encouraging those with an interest to provide feedback on the preferred route corridor and possible route options between now and the end of May.

“All of this work underlines the Scottish Government’s commitment to continued work with key stakeholders and local communities to ensure that Argyll and Bute remains open for business.”