The first section of Aberdeen’s new bypass opened to traffic today, marking a major milestone for the project.
A new roundabout and signalised junctions at Aberdeen International Airport are part of the works for the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR).
The new roundabout, to form Craibstone junction, also involved replacing another roundabout with permanent lights to create the new A96 Inverurie Road/Dyce Drive junction.
It is the first section of the AWPR Balmedie to Tipperty (B-T) project to open to traffic. Craibstone Roundabout will connect with the AWPR dual carriageway, once it opens, and also with the new Airport Link Road, which the council was also due to open today.
The new link road will allow traffic heading to the airport from the Inverurie side of the A96 to turn left earlier, while traffic exiting the airport will now be able to go straight ahead at the end of Argyll Road.
Keith Brown, Cabinet Secretary for Economy, Jobs and Fair Work said: “In December 2014, we announced that the Craibstone and Dyce Drive junctions would be open to traffic in autumn 2016 and we can confirm the first section of the AWPR-B-T works, the Craibstone and Dyce Junctions, is now operational.
“I’m sure this news will be appreciated by local communities, road users and businesses in the North-east and across Scotland who have been extremely patient while these works were undertaken. “Early benefits from the project are becoming a reality with improved road safety in this area and better journey time reliability, along with Aberdeen City Council’s Airport Link Road which is due to open today, will help improve and enhance transport in the local area.”
AWPR/B-T works are expected to continue in the Craibstone and Dyce area until winter 2017, mainly on the construction of a new bridge which will carry the AWPR over the A96.
Carol Benzie, managing director of Aberdeen International Airport, said she was “pleased to see” the new link road operational.
She added: “We welcome the improved road system around the airport, as it will alleviate the traffic issues that have created challenges to our passengers and employees in recent years.”