Protest mounts over re­lief road

Rutherglen Reformer - - News - Dou­glas Dickie

Res­i­dents op­posed to the £ 21mil­lion Cathkin Re­lief Road are plan­ning a protest march against the project.

The op­po­si­tion group set up against the plan have or­gan­ised the event, which will take place on Satur­day June 20, at 11am.

It will con­sist of a walk through the park area where the road is set to pass through – from Cathkin and Fern­hill Church all the way to Blair­beth.

Op­po­nents hope the walk will raise aware­ness of their fight and comes amid claims the new road will see the de­struc­tion of iconic hedges on Cathkin by­pass, although this has been dis­missed by the coun­cil.

The group plan to set up a stall at the Burn­side in Bloom Gala event on May 30 while an on­line pe­ti­tion has at­tracted more than 1200 sig­na­ture.

Alan McLennan, of the group, told the Re­former: “This will be a peace­ful protest march by con­cerned lo­cal res­i­dents and the idea is to pub­li­cise the gen­eral op­po­si­tion to this pro­posed road.

“Sadly many res­i­dents in the area still do not know about the road pro­posal and we are try­ing to raise aware­ness.

“Some res­i­dents have only found out to­day that the pro­pos­als in­clude re­mov­ing the his­toric beech hedges along both sides of the ex­ist­ing Cathkin by­pass and re­plac­ing them with 1.5m high sound bar­ri­ers.

“We are hop­ing for a large turnout of sup­port.

“Ob­jec­tions to the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion are be­gin­ning to ap­pear on the plan­ning por­tal and in­for­ma­tion on how to ac­cess it can be found on our web­site www. cathkin-re­lief-road.org.uk which I am updating on a daily ba­sis.”

The group have re­cently gained po­lit­i­cal sup­port from Glas­gow MSP Bob Doris, who this week tweeted: “My con­cerns are long­stand­ing and I will be putting in a for­mal ob­jec­tion.”

Coun­cil­lor Ger­ard Killen will hold three spe­cial surg­eries so he can make rep­re­sen­ta­tion on be­half of con­stituents.

Michael McG­lynn, head of plan­ning and Build­ing Stan­dards, said only a tiny por­tion of the Cathkin by­pass hedges would be af­fected.

He said: “The plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion has now been for­mally reg­is­tered. There is now a statu­tory [con­sec­u­tive] 21- day pe­riod dur­ing which rep­re­sen­ta­tions can be made.

“How­ever, the coun­cil rou­tinely ac­cepts rep­re­sen­ta­tions un­til the com­mit­tee re­port is fi­nalised.

“In as­so­ci­a­tion with the plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion for the road, it is pro­posed to in­tro­duce a sound bar­rier along the full length of the ex­ist­ing by-pass on both sides of the road at the rear of the ex­ist­ing foot­way.

“If ap­proved, the ex­ist­ing hedge along the length of the by­pass will be re­tained, with the ex­cep­tion of two very short sec­tions at the Burn­side Road junc­tion.”

The plan­ning ap­pli­ca­tion for the Cathkin Re­lief Road was sub­mit­ted by South La­nark­shire Coun­cil ear­lier this month.

If it gets the go- ahead the road, which has been mooted for over five decades, will link Cathkin By­pass with Fern­hill Road, near the junc­tions with Croft­foot Road.

The road has formed part of the coun­cil’s trans­port plan for the past 16 years, but fund­ing only be­came avail­able last sum­mer when the coun­cil signed up to the City Deal be­tween seven lo­cal au­thor­i­ties and the UK and Scot­tish gov­ern­ments.

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