Doubts have been raised by Moray Council about the condition of a new road built for school construction traffic.
The track has been built by Springfield Properties in the south of Elgin to allow the authority’s own contractors, Balfour Beatty, access to the site for Linkwood Primary School, which is currently a field.
However, now senior education officials at the council have admitted they are concerned about the quality of the route – potentially delaying building work even further.
The school is currently due to welcome students to its permanent home in summer 2020 but was due to be open already.
Contingency plans are continuing to be drawn up by the council in the event that pupils need to remain in temporary accommodation at East End Primary School beyond the start of the 2020 academic year.
Current estimates place the project at about £800,000 over the estimated £11.5million budget but warnings have been issued that further delays could push the price even higher.
Moray Council’s educational resources manager, Nick Goodchild, has explained talks are due to take place between the authority and Springfield in the coming weeks about the track to the school.
He said: “There is some concern about the quality of the haul road, which will be discussed over the next few weeks.
“What we’re reluctant to do is commit to the road being used if it is not of the correct condition or is suitable because it would then mean we would be responsible for the maintenance of it, which would come with additional cost.”
The school is being built as part of Springfield’s Elgin South masterplan, which contains up to 2,500 homes, another primary school and a sports centre.
Forres councillor George Alexander has concerns that the firm is “dragging its feet” regarding the Linkwood development.
He said: “They must be aware of the pressure that the council is operating under. We need to be confident they are pulling out all the stops required to get the school open as soon as possible.
“In the interests of everyone buying the houses they are building they need to do everything they can to get this school built.”
A Springfield spokeswoman said: “We have completed the access road for construction traffic so work can commence for the school. We look forward to seeing Linkwood Primary take shape over the coming months.”