Stop sticking spanners in the works!

It seems that at every turn, there’s a pressure group hiding behind the bushes ready to run out gleefully and stick a spanner in the works of every significant development project.

Today is a classic case in point. Road Sense, having been over-ruled by the public inquiry and the Scottish Government, are still bent on fighting the Aberdeen Western Peripheral Route (AWPR).

Incredibly, they have now taken their objections to the United Nations. (Do the United Nations not have better things to do?)

For goodness sake, the need for a bypass around Aberdeen is as clear as the nose on your face. Just take a look at the convoys of 40-tonne trucks tanking along the narrow B-roads to the west of Aberdeen all day and all night!

Aberdeen by-pass needed
Convoys of 40-tonne trucks dicing with cars on totally unsuitable B-roads

All that delaying the AWPR does, is prolong the misery for family motorists and the financial drain for businesses. It also puts more lives at risk with a lethal mix of big trucks, heavy traffic and narrow country roads.

History shows that there are pressure groups who will gleefully try and stop every significant development in this area.

When Donald Trump suggested he was going to build “the world’s best links golf course” just north of Aberdeen, the ’nay-sayers’ were falling over themselves to stick a spanner in this particular project. At £1 billion, surely there can be little doubt that this project has huge potential significance for the entire economy of Aberdeen City and Shire.

Yet, people were fighting to get into limelight as opposing it.

Then along comes Sir Ian Wood, offering to invest £50 million of his own money into creating a five-acre city centre park at Union Terrace. Undoubtedly a most generous offer. One that – even if you don’t agree with the project – deserves praise not vilification.

The pressure groups had a field day. Yippee, yet another project to oppose. Don’t let the truth get in the way of a good ‘underdog’ story. Rather than seeing the desire to do good for Aberdeen, they gleefully lined up to throw metaphorical rotten tomatoes at some of our prominent civic figures.

I certainly support everybody’s right to have an opinion. What frustrates me is the closed-minded attitude of those who can see no good in any new development. What I absolutely deplore is the abuse of those who have the city’s best interests at heart and who are prepared to invest time and money in trying to achieve them.

By all means make your point, but personal attacks are completely out of order.

Put together all the bickering that there has been about the AWPR, the Trump golf development and the City Square, and the message emanating from Europe’s energy capital is that were not interested in development of our city and, if you go ahead, you can expect harassment and delays at every stage.

Is that really is the attitude of the people in Aberdeen City and Shire (and I cant believe it is), then there is little hope for us developing a prosperous future in coming decades.
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