Aberdeenshire Council’s Garioch Area Committee recently heard a community engagement exercise took place during October last year to seek the views of the public on this project.
Three route options for Kemnay to Inverurie and three for Kemnay to Kintore were presented with residents being asked to choose which route they preferred and the reasoning behind their choice.
Nearly 900 responses were provided to the survey which highlighted the significant local interest in the project, with a good mix of ages feeding into the consultation.
A large proportion of those who participated indicated that they either did cycle to some degree or expressed a desire to do so, but reported that the main barrier to cycling was safety and the lack of available safe cycle routes.
From the options linking Kemnay to Kintore, route 2 was most favoured by just over half of respondents who felt that this offered the safest option being located away from the carriageway.
Councillors were advised that a hybrid option of routes 1 and 2 would be developed further to address some issues associated with the crossing of roads and that additional detailed design work on this route will follow taking on board comments raised during the engagement exercise.
When asked to consider a route between Kemnay and Inverurie, 60% of respondents identified route 3 as the most desirable link. This route would utilise the existing underpass into Inverurie at the Port Elphinstone bridge and it was recognised that officers will need to consider issues of gradient at key sections along this stretch.
Officers will now look at developing a more detailed design, with a progress report and costed design being taken to the Garioch Area Committee later this year.
Ewan Wallace, head of Environment and Sustainability Services, said: “I would like to thank all those who took the time to participate in our engagement process. The feedback has been greatly appreciated. It really does help in the decision-making process and helps you shape your own communities.”