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Highland Council promises 'frustrating' roadworks in Aviemore will be removed by end of next week


By Gavin Musgrove

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A tailback to the roundabout by the Aviemore retail park earlier this week.
A tailback to the roundabout by the Aviemore retail park earlier this week.

Under-fire Highland Council has confirmed that roadworks on Aviemore's only through-road will be removed by the end of next week.

There has been anger and frustration in the village as motorists have endured tailbacks running all the way back from Dalfaber Drive junction into the village centre and even beyond at times.

It has been taking more than 20 minutes to get through the village at peak times for several weeks now with claims that very little progress appears to be made with the junction's redesign work which many local residents have questioned the need for.

Now with the tailbacks growing even longer by the day as more traffic arrives with the main tourism season, the council has put a hold on the works and apologised for the inconvenience caused.

The local authority and Sustrans have confirmed that improvement works to the Grampian Road and Dalfaber Drive junction are being paused until September.

They had originally been scheduled to take around 10 weeks but are running well-behind and even in the early weeks had been causing major frustration when waits were shorter at the three sets of temporary traffic lights.

A Highland Council spokesperson said: "The delay in completing the works within the original timescale has resulted in regular large build ups of traffic which has caused long queues of traffic, especially at peak times, and this has caused frustration for drivers at the busy junction.

“The works were never intended to take place during the busy tourist season but a number of issues have caused delays and have subsequently had a knock-on effect on some other tasks within the programme.

“We apologise for any convenience caused by the works and have taken the decision to pause further works until after the peak tourist season.”

“We will confirm details of the new timescale to complete the works as soon as possible.

"A meeting will be held with the contractor next month to discuss and approve an updated programme for the works to be completed.

"In the meantime, the contractor will be off site and all temporary traffic management removed by the end of next week.

The plans for the revised Dalfaber Drive junction in Aviemore – the busiest traffic spot in Aviemore along with the turn-off to the Cairngorm ski road.
The plans for the revised Dalfaber Drive junction in Aviemore – the busiest traffic spot in Aviemore along with the turn-off to the Cairngorm ski road.

The works to the junction are being funded by Sustrans as part of the Active Aviemore Project.

The council has said this is 'to promote the use of walking and cycling for everyday journeys, to improve the ease of access for non-motorised users and to improve the health and wellbeing of the residents and visitors to the Aviemore area'.

However, many residents have said that the junction has worked without any problems in the past and are frustrated by the plans that will see traffic lights installed.

Others have said that a roundabout would have been a much better solution.

There have also been claims that the works have created a real danger in the Dalfaber Drive area with motorists speeding up in a bid to catch the lights before they change and face a longer wait.

The new Badenoch and Strathspey Community Hospital which opened last Autumn is served off Dalfaber Drive.

Residents claim their views have been ignore on controversial Dalfaber junction redesign

What are your thoughts on the redesign of the junction? Let us know in comments or email us at editorial@sbherald.co.uk


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