MORAY Council has approved a £250,000 investment in flood risk management and £1.7 million spend on roads and footbridges.
The approval means that maintenance will commence imminently on flood schemes in Aberlour, Rothes, Elgin, Forres, Dallas, Newmill and Lhanbryde.
The local authority’s road network features 376 bridges and 160 retaining walls, with the council saying that a number of them were damaged by vehicle collisions in 2020/21 – seven of which being hit-and-runs. The cost of repair work ranges between £1,684 and £17,915, with an average spend of £7,202 at each bridge.
The improvements works to come over the next year from the £1.7 million investment in roads and bridges includes the strengthening and refurbishment of Shougle Bridge; refurbishment and waterproofing at Dykeside Bridge; waterproofing at Nether Tomdow, Willowbank and Culach Burn Bridges; and collision repairs to Foths Bridge. A replacement for the Sanquahar Loch and other footbridges in Forres were also confirmed.
Chair of the economic growth, housing and environmental sustainability committee, councillor Graham Leadbitter, said, “Maintaining the road bridge network represents a significant annual cost for the council and it’s concerning to note so many hit-and-run incidents on our bridges. The cost to repair these can’t be recovered and is costing the council tens of thousands of pounds every year. I thank residents who continue to exercise caution when driving on our road bridge network and appreciate their responsibility in taking care of the network.
“Furthermore, it’s positive to see the replacement of footbridges in Forres to allow continued access to a number of walking routes in the area.”