Transport hits the headlines in Aberdeen, yet again

Transport seems to be constantly in the headlines in Aberdeen. Perhaps it is no wonder considering how our transport infrastructure was largely ignored during the period when the North Sea Oil industry baled out UK plc.

Government after government seemed happy to get the massive revenues from North Sea oil to keep the UK economy afloat. But, if Aberdeen asked for any infrastructure expenditure the answer was usually along the lines of:

  • You're rich you can afford to pay for it yourself.
  • Or, sometimes it seemed like the real answer was: 'Where's Aberdeen?'!

(That last one would tally with the suggestion that
an attempt was made to airbrush the oil and gas industry out of UK history.)

The latest transport mutterings are about two problems that, quite simply, would not be allowed to exist in any sensible go-ahead country:

  1. The long saga of the third crossing over the River Don and the suggestion by Scottish Executive Reporters (safely tucked away in the central belt and isolated from the reality of Aberdeen's shocking transport infrastructure) that we don't need a third bridge over the Don. Easy for them to say - they don't have to suffer the daily misery of sitting in traffic queues, or sit doing the business balance sheet and watch the hours and delivery times drain away.
  2. The almost equally long saga of the Haudagain roundabout, where three trunk roads converge along with the main distributor road into the north of the city centre. The fact that this has not already been turned into a flyover is, quite frankly, a national disgrace. This is the first major junction that any international visitor to this city, probably the second biggest hub of the international oil industry, encounters.

Any other country with a centre of economic activity this important to its national economy would make sure the infrastructure gave it a competitive edge in international terms.

Not in the UK. Our authorities prevaricate and dither while the problems pile up.

The reason seems to be the
paralysis brought about by tired political dogma that presents cars as evil polluters. The reality, however is a little less easy and comfortable for those who choose to enquire. Travel by train or bus and, per head, you may actually be producing more CO2 emissions than if you reach for the car keys!

Funny how the authorities have brainwashed us into thinking that public transport is
always the best option for the environment, isn't it?

At least for the Don crossing
Aberdeen City Council is making noises about pushing ahead. So it might even happen 30+ years after it was identified as a priority.

But, for the Haudagain, there are noises that maybe, perhaps we might get a solution based on an extra road and more traffic lights, or a bigger roundabout.

For goodness sake can we not do things properly for once?

The Haudagain needs a flyover with two lanes of free-flowing traffic in all the key directions. Anything less is thinking small.
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