Campaigners have hailed the “life-changing” benefits of improving a notorious north-east junction after road chiefs set a date for the £300,000 project.
Long-awaited works on a section of the A90 Aberdeen to Dundee road will commence on Monday, with eight weeks of ground investigations.
The Laurencekirk flyover, a busy blackspot junction with the A937 Laurencekirk to Montrose road, will be transformed to improve safety and accessibility.
A grade-separated crossing was announced in 2016 after campaigners battled for upgrades.
In July, transport chiefs revealed the preferred option for the new flyover with a plan to realign the A937 and carry it across the dual carriageway, with roundabouts on either side.
The commencement of the scheme marks the culmination of a long campaign by Laurencekirk resident Jill Fotheringham, who has spent 14 years lobbying for change.
She said: “I’m delighted to see it physically starting after a couple of years of being talked about.
“I did doubt whether it would ever happen, and there were two or three times when I almost gave up.
“But I’m stubborn and I think I knew how badly we needed it, so every time I heard ‘no you can’t’ I thought ‘yes, we can’.
“There have been crazy things happening on that road, accidents and so forth, and I’m not sure I could have coped much longer if nothing changed.
“There are people who have been scared to use that junction, so this is just immense.
“These improvements are going to be life-changing for so many people in the community.”
Traffic management measures will be in place when necessary, including single file sections controlled by traffic lights.
A Transport Scotland spokesman said: “We are now taking forward the detailed design of the preferred option with a view to publishing draft orders later this year, and these ground investigations will provide the detailed information needed to progress that work.
“We apologise for any inconvenience these works will cause and thank road users and locals in advance for their patience during the works.
“The contractor will closely monitor the operation of the traffic management measures to ensure that delays are kept to a minimum.
“We would ask drivers to plan their journeys in advance using the Traffic Scotland website, Twitter feed or Traffic Scotland radio.”