Make Your Voice Heard Over Transport Issues

first_imgAddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedIn Commenting on the Scottish Government’s draft report on its recent Dumfries and Galloway transport summit, Councillor Colin Smyth, chairman of the Economy, Environment and Infrastructure committee, said: “Improved transport links are vital to delivering our number one priority of building the local economy. But, the Scottish Government’s criteria for assessing investment in transport projects disadvantage Dumfries and Galloway and we repeatedly miss out. Vital projects such as a proper link road from Dumfries to the M74 and the re-opening of railway stations were previously deemed by the Government to be economically unviable due to our rurality and low population. The Scottish Government must reconsider its criteria to enable Dumfries and Galloway to access investment infrastructure to deliver improvement to the A75 and A77. So the key message we have to get across during this consultation is a clear demand that we want equity with the rest of Scotland when the next round of transport investment is announced. The Scottish Government needs to break down the barriers to transport investment for our region. The transport summit was only the start of the conversation. We need to keep up the pressure until we unlock the investment our region needs. The transport minister states that he wants anyone with an interest in transport in Dumfries and Galloway to comment by 31 October 2016. Several local pressure groups were excluded from participating in the transport summit. This is their opportunity to make their views known to the transport minister. I encourage all appropriate local groups to have their say.”During the summit Dumfries and Galloway Council made the case for:• A review of the criteria used by the Scottish Government to allocate funding for major transport projects, to ensure peripheral regions such as Dumfries and Galloway gain a fairer share when it comes to road, rail and active travel projects• Better and faster road connectivity between Dumfries and the M74• Improvements to the A75, A76, A77, A7 to ensure better connectivity north into the rest of Scotland, south into England, and east-west across Dumfries and Galloway• Improved rail links, including considerations of the re-opening of stations in the region to improving connectivity to Edinburgh, Glasgow, the north of England, London• Integrated transport services that involve road, rail, ferries• An end to cuts to the council’s funding from the Scottish Government, which is putting subsidies for local bus services at risk• Improved digital connectivitylast_img

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