Funding announced for A83 to reduce landslide risk

The A83 at the Rest and be Thankful pass, is prone to landslides. Picture: Robert Perry
The A83 at the Rest and be Thankful pass, is prone to landslides. Picture: Robert Perry
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A FURTHER £6 million is to ploughed into reducing the impact of landslides around the notorious Rest and Be Thankful pass on the A83 in Argyll, transport minister Keith Brown announced today.

The mitigation work is planned for other at-risk areas at Glen Kinglas, Cairndow and Loch Shira, west of the pass on the main Glasgow-Kintyre route.

It follows £8m being spent on similar work at the Rest and Be Thankful, including an emergency diversion route, which was used for the first time in March.

There have been at least eight landslides blocking the A83 in the area in the last five years.

The latest, in March, also forced overnight closures of the diversion route along the Old Military Road because of the risk of further rockfalls.

Three previous landslips in the area over the last year have included two at Kinglas, in October and January.

Some of the new cash will be used for improvements elsewhere on the road, including sharp bends at Strone Point near Inveraray.

Mr Brown said: “We want the road to remain operational, whatever the conditions, and we have made landslide mitigation our priority.

“Solutions are being delivered by Transport Scotland, with almost £8 million spent around the Rest and Be Thankful in recent years.

“Debris fences at this location have made a positive difference and the local diversion route along The Old Military Road has been used successfully.

“The A83 Route Study has recommended actions to address landslide hazards at other locations and this funding will allow us to take forward a programme that will achieve a similar level of residual risk from landslides that we have achieved at The Rest.”

Argyll and Bute Council leader Dick Walsh said: “The A83 is absolutely crucial to keep Argyll and Bute open for business. Such a vital transport connection undoubtedly deserves significant investment.

“I am delighted with the recognition that it will now be possible to do this mitigation work along the route.”