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20/03/2020

Berryden Corridor Improvement Project Planning Application Lodged

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Aberdeen City Council is to consider a planning application for the Berryden Corridor Improvement Project.

Planning permission is required for only some parts of the Berryden Corridor Improvement Project including the new road heading north from Ashgrove Road. Other parts, such as Caroline Place, are in a conservation area and require listed building and conservation area consents.

The applications detail proposals to demolish houses and flats which have been voluntarily purchased by Aberdeen City Council on Caroline Place (nos 1 & 2) and Hutcheon Street (nos 168-166). Routing proposals avoid the need for the listed The Father's House (former Rosemount Parish Church) and tenement flats on the corner of Westburn Road/Berryden Road to be demolished.

The project will be a major upgrade to the city's roads network as Berryden Road and nearby roads are currently operating beyond capacity leading to significant congestion and journey time delays, particularly at peak times. It will improve the efficiency of the road, cycleway and pavement network through improving journey time reliability, relieving congestion, and improving infrastructure for walking and cycling.

The Berryden Corridor Improvement Project involves widening the existing road and junction improvements between Skene Square and Ashgrove Road, and the construction of a new section of road between Ashgrove Road and Kittybrewster roundabout adding more than 1.7miles of additional lane capacity in total. The improved section of road would have traffic light junctions instead of roundabouts, except for the Kittybrewster roundabout which will remain.

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Once complete, the project will provide more than 10 new pedestrian crossings, approximately 0.8miles of additional footways, and 2.2miles of new cycle tracks, all aimed at encouraging people to walk and cycle more.

The improved road will build on the benefits gained from the opening of Diamond Bridge, which has about 12,000 vehicles going over it daily, relieving congestion at the Bridge of the Don and the Haudagain roundabout, while further improving connections within the city.

The applications are supported by various assessments including those considering for noise, flooding, ecology and heritage implications and proposals for mitigation. The submitted traffic modeling appraisal details the project will lead to increased traffic along the corridor however, there will be journey time reductions from 5% to 40% along the Corridor at busiest times of day. Across the wider local area radiating from the Corridor, the traffic modelling indicates numbers of vehicles queueing will be lower, with peak period queueing reduced by from 7% to 20%.

The planning permission application follows on from various consultation events held with the public as part of the process to keep the local community informed of the scheme.

A public exhibition giving information was held in Sainsbury's supermarket in Berryden in November 2019 along with and an accompanying online exhibition on the council's website attracting about 1,500 interactions from the public. Other consultation events are being carried out with key stakeholders in the local community.

Aberdeen City Council transport spokeswoman Councillor Sandra Macdonald said: "It is to be welcomed that the planning application and various consents have been applied for the Berryden Corridor Improvement Project.

"It is a significant step for this roads network scheme which will help journey time reliability, relieve congestion, and improve infrastructure for walking and cycling.

"I would encourage people to view the documents for the planning application and consents and take part in the process for the new road, pavements and cycling infrastructure being built."

The Berryden Corridor Improvement Project is one of several major capital projects being undertaken by ACC as part of a £1billion transformational programme across the city, including the Diamond Bridge, the AWPR B/T, the airport link road, the TECA complex, the Art Gallery, and the Music Hall.

The process for compulsory purchase was started by Aberdeen City Council in 2018 and is still underway. The compulsory purchase order for the Berryden Corridor Improvement Project aims to acquire the remaining land of about 100 plots required for the scheme, and the City Council already owns or controls about 80% of the land needed for the Corridor. It should be noted the compulsory purchase order relates only to plots of land, not buildings.

The Planning Authority will now go through the statutory process for each of the applications with their determination expected later in the year.

(MH/JG)

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