Banff and Buchan MSP Stewart Stevenson has written to Transport Scotland asking for a new traffic survey to be carried out on the A90.
Mr Stevenson says that changes in motorists’ travel patterns away from other roads and onto the now complete Balmedie-Tipperty dualled section means the A90 is now busier.
And updated statistics could help the business case for more improvements to be made.
Crucially, new figures could show an increase on traffic using the Toll of Birness to Peterhead section, which might make it reach the criteria for dualling.
In his letter to Transport Scotland, Mr Stevenson says: “I attended several briefing/engagement sessions during 2017/2018 with NESTRANS on the subject and welcome the work done to date in identifying interventions which may potentially enhance safety and improve journey times for – it would appear - relatively little investment, in particular the Toll of Birness junction.
“In terms of improvements between Toll of Birness and Peterhead/Fraserburgh, I am aware that while the traffic statistics show the section between south of Ellon and Toll of Birness already meets the vehicle volume criteria for dualling, this is not the case north of Toll of Birness owing to the traffic dividing between the A90 and the A952.
“However, there is a growing body of anecdotal evidence to suggest that the dualling of the Balmedie-Tipperty section, coupled with the AWPR, has led to a marked change in driver behaviour, even before the AWPR is fully open to traffic.
“For example, vehicles which used to travel via the A975 coastal route, which includes a substantial number whose origin was Peterhead, are now staying on/diverting to the A90 owing to the superior road conditions
“I would therefore request that once the AWPR is fully opened and a period has been allowed for motorists to ‘bed-in’ and settle into a new commuting pattern, that an updated survey is carried out on the traffic flows north of Ellon and, in particular, north of the Toll of Birness.”