A transport body is to move on to its next stage for dualling a major North-east road.
Transport Scotland is looking to improve the A96 between Aberdeen and Inverness by 2030.
The organisation is now looking at assessing options for the route between the east of Huntly and Aberdeen.
According to a report sent to members of NESTRANS this process could take two years to complete.
In a letter from Transport Scotland to the group, it said: “The Scottish Government is committed to completing the dualling of the A96 between Inverness and Aberdeen.
“This significant undertaking requires careful, in-depth planning and designs so we deliver the right scheme to help tackle congestion.
“Following the appointment of AmeyArup as its consultant, Transport Scotland is now progressing to the Design Manual for Roads and Bridges stage two scheme assessment process for the A96 dualling east of Huntly to Aberdeen scheme.
“This process will take approximately two years to complete, encompassing engineering, environmental, traffic and economic assessment of potential route corridor options to inform a preferred route option choice.”
Members of NESTRANS will hear the report tomorrow.