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Could a long-term solution to solve the many issues of the A83 be close?

Road works on the A83 where the landslides have occurred.
Road works on the A83 where the landslides have occurred.

Five consultants have been asked to draw up plans to finally end the problems on the landslip prone A83 Rest and Be Thankful road.

Transport Minister Jenny Gilruth met with A83 Task Force, whose role is to some of the issues that affect the road through the narrow valley of Glen Croe.

The A83, which travels from Tarbert to Campbeltown, is often closed due to severe weather, which frequently causes landslides and flooding.

It requires a diversion that takes motorists down onto the valley floor on the Old Military Road.

Old Military Road is often used as a diversion route following severe weather or when the A83 is closed.

The A83 Rest and Be Thankful is notorious for its steep ascent on the side of Glen Croe and was given the moniker since drivers are thankful they made it to the top.

Five companies have been invited to propose ideas that will provide a long-term solution and limit disruption long-term.

Currently, workers are carrying out ground inspections in Glen Croe to identify possible alternative routes.

To further ensure a practical and effective solution, the task force is consulting with the Norwegian Government, given their reputation for successful engineering projects.

Norwegian companies asked for expertise

Norway’s roads network contains many tunnels due to the landscape, similar to the Rest and Be Thankful.

Two of the proposals for a long-term solution contain tunnels, so given Norway’s experience, they are providing advice on the project.

Ms Gilruth, said: “Improving the resilience of the A83 at the Rest and Be Thankful remains a key transport priority for the Scottish Government.

“I want to assure local residents, businesses and communities that we are aware of the urgent need to make progress on this – that is why we are pursuing measures to maintain connectivity on a short, medium and long term basis in parallel.

“Identifying the preferred route corridor for a resilient long term solution last year was a major step forward for this vital work.

“With the shortlisting of five design consultants, we hope to appoint the best candidate to take forward that work as soon as due process allows.

“We intend to finalise proposals for the medium-term solution for the resilient route through Glen Croe by autumn.”

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