North-east activists pushing for transport improvements are gearing up to formally launch their campaign.
Dual Peterhead is being driven by Peterhead Community Council whose members want better connections between the town and the AWPR route, via a new dual carriageway.
The group believes an upgrade to the current link would provide a major boost to the Buchan port and the rest of the north-east.
Members have been busy preparing to make their case for a new road between Ellon and the port and want to speak to those who could make it a reality.
In October, they called for the transport chiefs to dual the route after figures showed the number of crashes on the A90 Aberdeen to Peterhead rose from 50 in 2016-17 to 63 in 2017-18.
The group said it showed the existing carriageway was “unsuitable, dangerous and certainly not fit for the future of Peterhead”.
Now Dual Peterhead is a step closer to launching and activists want to meet with those at the very top.
The group’s Lisa Buchan said they hope to secure meetings with bosses from NESTRANS and the transport secretary.
She said: “The reasons we are doing is so that it makes a better place to live, work in and visit.
“We need the road to be fit purpose for tourism and to make it a more attractive place to live and to work.
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“The community council and the wider community have sometimes felt a bit left out and we need this infrastructure to be in place.
“We’ve already contacted some local businesses and so far we have had positive responses and we hope to meet with NESTRANS at the end of the month.
“So we are really trying to raise the profile and make it known this is what we need in the area.
“We are aware Michael Matheson is coming up and we are hoping to get in touch with him as well.”
Peterhead South and Cruden councillor Alan Fakley is lending his support to the Dual Peterhead cause.
He said: “A dual carriageway is absolutely vital for Peterhead’s economy.
“We need it for fishing and oil and gas and we also need safer roads, which must be the highest priority.”
Last night, a Transport Scotland spokesman said that 85 per cent of the AWPR is now complete and was already benefitting people in the north-east.
He said talks about improving the road infrastructure beyond Ellon were continuing.
The spokesman said: “Regional partners are continuing to work with Transport Scotland to consider the short, medium and longer term operation of the A90 and the wider transport corridor between Aberdeen, Peterhead and Fraserburgh.
“The longer term consideration of the routes north of Aberdeen will be in the context of the ongoing Strategic Transport Appraisal, part of the Aberdeen City Region Deal, and through the second Strategic Transport Projects Review.
“Appropriate local and regional engagement will continue throughout the appraisal process to ensure that all relevant stakeholders and local communities are involved in the process.”
A spokesman for north-east transport body NESTRANS said they would be “open” to meeting with representatives from Dual Peterhead.
In November 2017, NESTRANS set out its plans to improve some of the major roads around Peterhead and Fraserburgh, but their proposals fell short of dualling the entire A90 Aberdeen to Peterhead road north of Ellon.
They proposed to spend between £10 million and £15 million improving the A90 Aberdeen to Fraserburgh road in November 2017, with the suggestion of installing roundabouts at the notorious Toll of Birness and Cortes junctions.
The package for the A90, and the A952 Toll of Birness to Fraserburgh route also included overtaking lanes and partial dualling.