An MP has called for the local authority to reconsider allowing private hire vehicle to use a controversial Aberdeen bus gate.
Kirsty Blackman wrote to Angela Scott, chief executive of Aberdeen City Council, regarding the Bedford Road bus gate in a bid to change its rules.
Currently taxis are allowed to go through the area but private hire vehicles are not – meaning they have to go the long way round when collecting or dropping off customers.
Ms Blackman said the current position can affect disabled residents, who may often rely on taxi vehicles as their sole means of transport to get about.
In her letter, Ms Blackman said: “I have been advised that often when a consumer phones a taxi company to arrange a taxi to attend their property, a private hire vehicle may attend in its place.
“To the consumer, whether a taxi or private hire vehicle attends makes no difference, except that a private hire vehicle is required to make an extended journey around the Bedford Road bus gate.
“Further to this, I understand that private hire vehicles are able to access bus lanes without penalty and I am unsure why they have been excluded from accessing the bus gate, negatively impacting customers.
“I have also been advised that this disproportionately affects disabled customers who often rely on taxi and private hire vehicles as their sole means of transport.
“I would urge you could reconsider the council’s position and allow private hire vehicles to access the Bedford Road bus gate without penalty.”
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It emerged last year that the site would not be opened up to give residents access, after they complained they had to endure long tailbacks from having to drive around.
Taxis were voted to be allowed access in November 2017, after the gate was installed in May 2016, to stop drivers using Bedford Road as a through-road after the Diamond Bridge opened.
A council spokeswoman said: “We can confirm that the Chief Executive has received a letter from Kirsty Blackman yesterday regarding the Bedford Road bus gate and will respond to Ms Blackman directly in due course.”