Solution sought to Tesco congestion issue

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AN ELLON councillor is persevering with her campaign for improved roads, after the council road’s department dismissed calls for a new slip lane at the exit of Balmacassie Industrial Estate.

Cllr Gillian Owen has campaigned for the road improvements following complaints from drivers exiting Tesco, who argue that the lack of a slip lane between the roundabout and the A920 leads to traffic jams at peak periods caused by right-turning traffic. A slip lane would allow left-turning traffic to filter onto the A920, without causing a backlog.

However, Roads Department engineer Mark Peters has written to Cllr Owen confirming that the roads department had ruled out the need for improvement at the moment, while conceding that developments in the town - and increased traffic at Balmacassie - would necessitate improvements in future.

The matter is complicated by the fact that the road is currently owned by Tesco who, despite giving an assurance last year that the matter would be considered, have not yet lodged any plans for improvement to the junction.

In his report to Cllr Owen, Mr Peters says: “The testing suggests that despite the reduction in traffic at the A920/Tesco junction as a result of the approved road layout, additional mitigation would be required at this junction when considering future development in Ellon. Mitigation could, for example, include a roundabout or traffic signals.”

Cllr Owen said that delaying the work was simply postponing the inevitable, and that the junction would have to be fixed sooner rather than later. She told the Times: “These traffic jams a source of frustration to drivers exiting Tesco, and a slip lane would not only answer this problem, but improve general access to Balmacassie Industrial Estate in anticipation of future developments there.

“Once the estate is fully up and running, the volume of traffic is going to increase significantly.”

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