Two sections of the skyline within the Cairngorm National Park are to drastically change over the remainder of the year, as approval is granted to remove over seven miles of overhead transmission lines.
The decision by Ofgem will see the sections near Boat of Garten and Nethy Bridge removed, with both circuits being replaced by underground cabling.
In total, 46 transmission towers will be removed from the Cairngorm landscape, a decision that has been welcomed by Scottish and Southern Electricity Networks (SSEN).
Work on the two areas is to cost in the region of £32 million and is expected to be completed by 2020.
The work advances on the Beauly Denny project which has already seen a reduction of over 300 towers across a distance of around 55 miles.
Engineers will conduct the work under the Vista project, designed to reduce the visual impact of Scottish transmission assets.
Euan Smith, lead of SSEN Transmission’s Vista project, said: “We are delighted Ofgem has approved our funding request to remove an additional 46 transmission towers, covering a combined distance of 12km (7.4 miles), from the Cairngorms National Park.
“Once complete, the removal of this additional infrastructure will leave a lasting legacy for current and future generations by improving the visual amenity within one of Scotland’s most precious landscapes.
“We would like to thank all stakeholders who helped shape the development of our Cairngorm VISTA schemes and we now look forward to progressing with these works, which we expect to complete by around 2020.”
Funding for the project has come from a wider £500 million scheme administered by the energy regulator Ofgem, which allows the three electricity transmission owners across the UK to bid for funding in order to mitigate the impact of historic electricity infrastructure in National Parks and National Scenic Areas.
Both Boat of Garten and Nethy Bridge attract some of the largest numbers of visitors to the Cairngorm National Park, with the move to reduce the visual impacts welcomed.
Local councillor Bill Lobban said: “This is really good news.
“Similar works have been carried out between Boat of Garten and Aviemore and it has really improved the outlook of the area there and it has made a big difference.
“I am very glad to hear this and I am sure local people will be too.”