CROSS TAY LINK ROAD ‘MUST GO AHEAD TO PROTECT FUTURE GROWTH OF PERTH CITY REGION’
Perthshire Chamber of Commerce warned that the planned Cross Tay Link Road (CTLR) must go ahead to protect the future growth of Perth city region beyond the Covid-19 pandemic.
Senior business leaders are concerned that the £118m infrastructure project is at risk as Perth and Kinross Council gets ready to meet later this month to fix its budget, including major capital projects.
Perth is already a major strategic hub in the Scottish transport network, connecting the Glasgow-Edinburgh central belt and the North and North-East of Scotland. CTLR includes new road infrastructure linking the A9 over the River Tay to the A93 and A94 north of Scone.
CTLR is a key element of Perth’s ambitious sustainable growth strategy over the next 20 years, which aims to generate more jobs, create a fairer region and build on the area’s environmental strengths.
The new infrastructure will help deliver essential links to thousands of new homes being built in the region. The project will significantly reduce congestion and air pollution in the city centre of Perth, significantly reduce journey times, improve access for local communities and is part of plans to help deliver a shift to greener travel options.
Without the development of the CTLR, the city could face severe future transport problems and more devastatingly, limit the region’s opportunity for future economic growth.
However, Perthshire Chamber is worried that CTLR could be delayed or even scrapped when councillors meet on 30 September to finalise the local authority’s budget as it seeks to make savings as a result of the impact of Covid-19.
Vicki Unite, Chief Executive of Perthshire Chamber of Commerce, said: “This is a huge decision that will have a massive impact on the future direction and prosperity of our area for years to come. This project must go ahead to protect the future growth of the Perth city region.
“The benefits of the new infrastructure are very clear. Better connections and accessibility to our city to attract high quality jobs and visitors. Reduced traffic in Perth, improving air quality in and around the city centre and Bridgend and making it a healthier place to live. And it will enable new, planned and committed developments, helping to secure the livelihood of many new and existing local businesses facing a huge challenge from the impact of Covid-19 pandemic.
“This is a time for politicians of all parties to come together and show they have the same ambition for our city region that has seen other cities in Scotland prosper. Investment in CTLR is an investment in jobs, a more sustainable and fairer region, more of our fantastic independent businesses and future opportunities for our young people.
“If we are to come out of Covid-19 and not see communities across our region wither, we need to grasp the opportunities for growth. Our businesses and the people they employ are relying on councillors to make the right decision and fully back CTLR. Anything less will be disastrous for the future of our city and the wider region.”