Residents in an Aberdeen community are to have a say over plans to remove a bus gate.
Scotia Homes has written to people living in Dubford and Shielhill areas of the Bridge of Don to ask if they’d like to see the bus gate, which runs from Dubford Road to Shielhill Avenue, axed.
The house builder is proposing it is removed for a six-month trial period in an effort to make retail units on the site more attractive to potential occupants.
Supermarket chain Co-op has expressed interest in opening a store there – but only if car access is improved to the south.
At the moment, only buses are allowed through, but it’s hoped the gate would change to priority traffic management.
People living in the area have until November 18 to answer whether they would support the removal and give reasons why.
The gate was introduced in June 2016 as part of the planning process for the Shielhill development.
A spokesman for Scotia Homes said: “The Diamond Bridge and AWPR have positively transformed commuting patterns and the improved road network has significantly increased connectivity in and around the city.
“These improvements mean commuters from the north no longer face the historic Ellon road bottlenecks that may have resulted in ‘rat run’ shortcuts via the development and Dubford Road.
“Meanwhile, Scotia is working hard to attract key commercial and retail occupiers to enhance your community.
“However, the bus gate makes this difficult.
“Co-op, for example, will take a unit only if the gate is removed because it prevents car access – vital customers and employees – from the south.
“Other potential tenants are highly likely to take the same stance.”
The gate was originally installed to stop the route, which has access from Scotstown Road to the B999, being used as a rat run by commuters.
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In the letter, residents were told that benefits of the removal would include more direct and ultra-convenient access to the city and wider Bridge of Don via Dubford Road. Travel times from Shielhill to Greenbrae School, for example, would improve.
Scotia Homes said any negative impacts of the bus gate’s removal would be monitored closely.
The spokesman said: “There is potential for Dubford Road and streets within the southern edges of the development to experience increased vehicle movements, while offset reductions may be expected on the northern edges closer to Shielhill Road.
“As such, the volume, frequency and size of the experimental route would be recorded and assessed during the trial.”
Residents’ views will be collated then presented to Aberdeen City Council alongside other studies, such as traffic surveys.
Any decisions about making the removal permanent would be subject to further consultation, the spokesman added.