The procurement process is underway for a further six miles of dual carriageway on the A9.
The six mile section from Tomatin to Moy is to be upgraded in a construction contract worth £115m.
Transport Scotland has published compulsory purchase orders on more than 900 parcels of land, the most northly section of the Scottish Government’s £3bn programme to dual the A9 between Perth and Inverness.
The contract will be awarded in the second half of 2022, and when complete will result in almost 20 miles of continuous dual carriageway south of Inverness city.
Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity Michael Matheson said: “It’s particularly pleasing to announce that the next phase of A9 Dualling will be the stretch between Tomatin to Moy.
“When complete, it will result in nearly 20 miles of continuous dual carriageway to the south of Inverness, allowing safer, more reliable and shorter journey times. More immediately, this investment will provide a vital boost to the construction industry as we support its recovery from the impacts of the Covid-19 pandemic.
“Today’s publication of the Made Orders for the scheme represents another milestone towards dualling the A9 between Perth and Inverness, one of the biggest transport infrastructure projects in Scotland’s history.”
Transport Scotland started the procurement of the construction contract with the publication of a Prior Information Notice today and it is expected that the contract will be awarded in the second half of 2022.
Meanwhile, ground investigation works, which are a key step towards construction, are planned to progress over the coming months, subject to Covid-19 restrictions.
Mr Matheson said: “Although the design and development process has been somewhat protracted by the impacts of Covid-19, we are continuing to ensure that local communities have their chance to input and to the final design.
“Market consultation is currently underway on the remainder of the programme. We expect this process to conclude in summer 2021.
“It is important to remember this is an incremental programme, which is already starting to deliver with the section between Kincraig and Dalraddy already complete and construction of the section between Luncarty and Pass of Birnam is well on target to be completed in the winter.”