Cllr and MSP clash over A90 dualling bid

Councillor Gillian Owen at the Toll of Birness junction.
Councillor Gillian Owen at the Toll of Birness junction.

An Ellon councillor and the Banff and Buchan MSP have clashed over the campaign to dual the A90 north of Ellon.

Gillian Owen, who has been a staunch campaigner for the dualling, has critcised Stewart Stevenson over his ‘lack of knowledge’ of the situation.

Stewart Stevenson MSP has been accused of failing to understand that survey work has already been completed.

Stewart Stevenson MSP has been accused of failing to understand that survey work has already been completed.

Councillor Owen says while it has been encouraging to note the number of MSPs entering the debate over the future of the A90 Ellon onwards, it is “disappointing” that there seems to be a considerable lack of knowledge in some of the reports.

She states: “The latest contribution by Mr Stevenson is a clear example. He fails to understand that the survey work has already been completed and he should have been aware that, to undertake further surveys would only slow down the case that has already been built up.

“As a former Minister for Transport I would have thought he would understand the process that has been followed.”

Councillor Owen says Nestrans has done the STAG appraisals for road interventions on the A90 (principally) as part of the multi-modal study into the Aberdeen-Peterhead-Fraserburgh corridor.

“These show that there is the basis of a very sound business case for dualling Ellon onwards, creating a roundabout at the Toll of Birness and partial dualling of the route on to Peterhead.

“The study into whether there is scope for rail on the corridor is continuing,” she said.

“Can I make a plea to all that MSPs who have taken a recent interest in the dualling of the A90 Ellon onwards, that now is the time for action and as soon as a decision is made about future improvements that they tell the Scottish Government to get on with it,” she added.

Commenting on the allegations, Mr Stevenson said: “These are extremely disappointing comments from Cllr Owen, who has chosen to launch a political attack under the guise of asking people to ‘pull together’.

“My approach to Transport Scotland appears to have been well received by the local campaign, ‘Dual Peterhead’ who have put it on their website along with a cross-party selection of testimonials.

“In their short time in existence, Dual Peterhead have done a power of work and have done so on a non-political, cross-party basis and they are very much to be commended for that.

“If Councillor Owen genuinely believed that having new information which I fully expect will further support the case for upgrading the A90 would be unhelpful then she could have that conversation with me directly, rather than seeking publicity for herself in the newspapers,” he added.

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