North Ayrshire Council is looking for £25 million of government funding to help fund the upgrade of a ‘missing link’ road in the region.
The council will apply for money through the Levelling Up Fund to make changes to the B714 on top of £3 million of the council’s own money to provide the 10% match funding needed.
There is a need to upgrade the B714 between the A737 (T) (south of Dalry) to the A78 (T) at the Sharphill roundabout. Work will include the realignment of sections of the route to improve the road geometry and the construction of a new link between the B714 and the A737 (T) close to the Dalry bypass junction to the south of the town.
The B714 will remain a single carriage, however, the entire route would be widened. Active travel and environmental enhancements will also be delivered as part of the programme, reports the Daily Record.
Council leader Joe Cullinane said: “Upgrading the B714 has been a long-held strategic transport priority for the council. We see the B714 as the missing link between the existing Three Towns bypass and the Dalry bypass. Its upgrade will significantly improve connectivity between North Ayrshire and Glasgow, the central belt and wider motorway network.
“That will have a huge impact for tourism, economic growth and provide enhanced links to the Arran and Cumbrae ferry services.”
He added: “Our ambitions are for this project to be much more than just upgrading the road and the project will aim to significantly improve active travel infrastructure along the route, helping connect communities and provide improved active travel opportunities for residents, and we will deliver environmental enhancements along the route too.
“This bid forms part of our recovery plan for North Ayrshire. We are determined to use every lever at our disposal to help our communities recover from the pandemic and that’s why we will be setting aside £3m of the council’s own funds to support this project.”
A business case for the improvements has been submitted and it is expected the council will learn whether they have been successful in the autumn, said the Daily Record report.