A campaigner who battled for 15 years for a flyover at a notorious junction spoke of her joy after it was announced ground work is to start next month.
Transport Scotland is planning to award a £300,000 contract to Allied Exploration and Geotechnics for the A90 Laurencekirk junction improvement scheme.
It is expected ground investigation will start early next month and will take around eight weeks.
A preferred option for the improvement works was chosen by the Government body last year.
Transport Scotland will build a flyover at the site, which will have a new bridge with a roundabout on each side.
A link road is to provide replacement access to Johnston Lodge and Johnston Mains from the eastern roundabout.
The centre and north junctions at Laurencekirk from the A90 will remain open as part of the £24 million scheme.
Campaigners have been calling for a flyover at the A90/A937 road for 15 years.
Jill Fotheringham from Laurencekirk, who spearheaded the campaign, got involved in 2004 after a number of deaths on the route.
The florist, who has a shop in Montrose, said: “This is the first physical piece of work we will see on the road.
“I know there has been plenty of work going on behind the scenes but to be able to see them actually doing something on site will be great.
“I have been saying for years that I wanted them to just get on with it and get the flyover built.
“However, I think any progress is good and I am happy to finally see something being done.”
Jill added: “I’ve just moved back to Laurencekirk and still work in Montrose, so I use the junction twice a day – and I find it horrific. It isn’t just the local area this affects. The junction is so important to the people of Montrose and it makes such a difference to the people living there and working in Aberdeen.”
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It is expected traffic measures will be put in place on the A90 when work begins, with Transport Scotland saying it wants to keep disruption to a minimum.
Michael Matheson, Cabinet Secretary for Transport, Infrastructure and Connectivity, said: “Having let the public see and comment on the preferred option for the much-needed Laurencekirk junction improvement scheme last summer, we continue to push forward with the design of the preferred option in greater detail with a view to publishing draft orders for the scheme later in 2019.
“These ground investigations due to get under way next month will provide the detailed information needed to help inform the ongoing development and assessment of the preferred option.
“When complete, the scheme will help reduce accidents and delays by preventing traffic turning or crossing at the busy A90 junction to the south of the town.
“As well as grade-separating the junction, the scheme will also improve safety and accessibility for all active travel users.”