New call for im­proved trans­port

The Oban Times - - Front Page -

A CALL by the West Coast’s lead­ing eco­nomic de­vel­op­ment agency has con­cluded that the en­trances and ex­its to Oban need to be im­proved and train journey times need cut­ting.

A re­port pub­lished on Tues­day, June 28, calls for in­vest­ment in the A85 Oban to Tyn­drum, the A816 Oban to Lochgilp­head and im­prove­ments on the Glas­gow to Oban train line.

High­lands and Is­lands En­ter­prise (HIE) com­mis­sioned ekos­gen to carry out the Argyll and Bute Trans­port Con­nec­tiv­ity and Econ­omy Study last year.

Af­ter con­sult­ing more than 40 busi­nesses and or­gan­i­sa­tions, the re­port high­lights trans­port and its ef­fect on the econ­omy in Argyll and Bute. It claims there is an ur­gent need for in­vest­ment to in­crease the pop­u­la­tion and safe­guard the area’s fi­nan­cial fu­ture.

The re­port fo­cused on times be­tween the main pop­u­la­tion cen­tres of Dunoon, Camp­bel­town, Lochgilp­head, Oban and Rothe­say, and from these on­ward to Glas­gow.

The re­port sug­gests in­vest­ment can play a sig­nif­i­cant role in en­cour­ag­ing pop­u­la­tion and eco­nomic growth. It con­cluded that, in ad­di­tion to Scot­tish Gov­ern­ment plans re­gard­ing the A82, A83, rail and ferry ser­vices, the fol­low­ing trans­port corridors should be given con­sid­er­a­tion: the A85, in­clud­ing ac­cess to Oban; the A816, to im­prove journey times on the Oban to Lochgilp­head cor­ri­dor; re­move the con­straints posed by the sin­gle-track sec­tions of the Dunoon- Colin­traive-Por­tavadie road (B836/A8003/ B8000); and in­vest­ment to re­duce the West Coast rail­way journey times.

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