Council demands ‘urgent action’ as deadline for replacement A83 road set

A replacement road for the A83 Rest and be Thankful must be constructed and opened by May 2026 at the latest, Argyll and Bute Council has said in response to Transport Scotland’s recent strategic transport projects review.

The message came in a letter addressed to the Scottish Government’s transport secretary, Michael Matheson. It comes following continuous closures of the road due to landslips.

Councillor Robin Currie, leader of Argyll and Bute Council, and Michael Russell, the region’s MSP, stated that the following actions must be progressed:

  • Planning, construction and opening of the replacement route within the life of the next parliament and at the very latest before May 2026;
  • Continuation (and increase if necessary) the mitigation measures currently underway at the site;
  • More frequent meetings of the A83 Taskforce to focus on driving forward delivery of the replacement route.

Mr Russell commented, “The report itself states the case that the A83 is one of only two trunk roads connecting Argyll and Bute to the central belt, that it is absolutely critical for the movement of goods and people and that it plays a vital part in all aspects of life in Argyll and Bute, from economy to education and employment opportunities.

“The pace of the action must match the urgency of the situation and that is why we are calling for the new route to be put in place in the life of the next parliament and no later.”

Councillor Currie added, “Everyone with Argyll and Bute’s interests at heart is agreed that urgent action is needed to ensure our connections to and from the rest of the country are reliable, sustainable and open for business at all times.

“With this joint approach we are calling for three key actions and clear timescales to be put in place which will address this situation once and for all. As we focus on Argyll and Bute’s recovery it is absolutely vital to stay connected.”